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VOL. I. 




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LAND, IN THE EAST-INDIES* &c. &c. &c. 

My Lord, 

Dedicatory praife hath ever. 

been fufpedted of fincerity ; and parTes, indeed, 
among men of the world, as a ftrain of turgid lan- 
guage, defigned to court favour, footh the vanity 
of a patron, or — in »ts beft fenfe, to exprefs the 
hafty dictates of gratitude. — Yet, I have the con- 



fidencc to hope, that the tenor of this dedication 
will deferve a lefs fevcre cenfurc, and that it will 
be even faid, I have narrowed the limits of my 

When I had refolved to intrude my book of 
Travels on the notice of the public, I naturally 
looked around, being an unknown author, for fome 
name, to give it a fanclion ; not the fanclion of 
wealth or grandeur ; for they are not always the 
criterion of worth : but that which was to be ob- 
tained from the man, who flood eminent for the 
qualities which moft effentially contribute to the 
honour and welfare of his country. 

The object of this fearch, which does not crofs 
the e)c at every glance, was feen with pleafure ; 
and though the ufes derived from it may be deemed 
prcfumptuous, I could not refift the defire of fixing 
fo bright an ornament to my work ; and of offering 
however {lender, my tribute of applaufe to aclions, 
which demand a diftinguiflied page in the annals 
of our nation. 

Ill Fortune, which from the day of ancient 




Rome, has been ordinarily followed by neglect, 
obfcin-ity, and oftentimes difgrace, opened a more 
extenfive field for the difplay of Your Lordship's 
endowments ; and like the blafts of Winter on the 
rooted oak, hold out, honourable teftimony of fu- 
perior ftrength. 

In the Eaftern world, Your Lordship has 
been oppofed to an enemy far more formidable, 
— the pofledion of a power never before exercifed 
by a Britifti fubjeel ; not even committed to the 
firft magiftrate of our ftate ; and which extends 
over a fpacious region, a numerous and wealthy 
people. Yet, far removed from controul, in a 
land whofe every principle of government is ac- 
tuated by a rapacious avarice, whofe people never 
approach the gate of authority without an offering, 
we have feen, and with wonder, the inflexible 
maintainance of an integrity, only to be be equalled 
by a temperate ufe of command. 

But, panegyrick being the leaft grateful where 
it is the moft due, I will clofe this addrefs, with 
a zealous wifli, that Your Lordship may yet 


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continue to govern the Britifh dominion in India, 
and complete the work that already hath aflumed 
fo fair an afped. The (acritlce is great, but the 
reward is ftill greater ; it will reach beyond the fo- 
vereign's bounty, or the peoples praife. 



I have the Honour to be, 

With the moft profound refpecl, 
My Lord, 
; Your Lordship's 

Moft devoted, 

ft lii , A , r. 

And moft obedient 

humble Servant, 

Auguft the 1790. 


toy vr.>\' f i!.ti ;>: 

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Books of Voyages and Travels having been ever 
held in eftimation, and indulgently received, I am the 
Iefs fearful of fubmitting the following volume to the 
notice of the public. A knowledge of the manners of dif- 
ferent nations qualifies domeftic prejudice, and enlight- 
ens the mind ; but the fubje&s of Britain derive from 
it a fingular benefit ; they fee through a comparifon 
that communicates a fond pleafure to the heart, the unri- 
valed excellency of their laws, constitution and govern- 
ment ; they fee thefe rare gifts brightly reflected on 
their national charader, which ftill avowedly maintains 
its pre-eminence amongft the nations of the European 
world. Were a man to form a judgment of the bias of 
Vol. I. b his 

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his own genius and difpofition, (on the merits of which 
he is, perhaps the lead qualified to decide, (I would un- 
refervedly fay, that in the courfe of my journey, I 
felt no impulfe of partiality for any feci: or body of men. 
It is of ferious concern to letters^ that many a man of ge- 
nius and feience has fixed a difcredit on his works, by a 
wilful adherence to fome &*owite fyftem, which alluring 
to its ftandard a various train of affections, and ideas, 
he becomes involuntarily incited to facrifice to it the 
principles of truth and reafon. 

Travellers (land accufed, even, on proverbial au- 
thority, of adopting a figurative and loofe ftyle of defcrip- 
tion ; and as I have been thrown into tracks, removed 
from the eye of European obfervation, 1 am prompted 
to earneftly folicit the confidence of the public in 
behalf of this work, and to fay, that however vi- 
tiated by the errors of judgment, it has no tendency 
to difcolour or mifreprefent truth. The curfory differ- 
tation on the former and prefent ftate of Bengal, may 
have fome claim to favour, from the confideration that 
I vifited that province in the defcription of a paffenger ; 


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though but a fmall portion of local knowledge might 
have been acquired, effential advantages arofe from this 
temporary refidence. 

Guided by no views of intereft, nor impreffed by 
any frown of power, I was enabled to examine the 
objects that came before me through a difpaflionate 

The letter on the mythology of the Hindoos, fome 
copies of which were published in 1785, has been 
corrected fince my return to India ; but from the va- 
rious intricacy of the fubjeft, I am apprehenfive it may 
yet contain errors and apparent inconnftcncics. Invefti- 
gations of the religious ceremonies and cuftoms of the 
Hindoos, written in the Carnatic, and in the Punjab, 
would in many examples widely differ ; yet the Hin- 
doo religion, in all parts of India, ftand on a common 
bafis ; nor does the vaft fuperftru&ure, when the view is 
infpe&ed with attention, eflentially differ in its compart- 
ments. The oftenfible difGmilarity arifes, perhaps from 
the manners of the fame people, varying in Northern and 
Southern regions. A native of the lower Carnatic is mild, 

b 2 tempc- 


temperate, and generally timid ; he performs the or- 
dinances of his religion with a zealous and fcrupulous 
attention ; and the bramin of that country, with many 
of the other feds, is confined ftri&ly to the ufe of vege- 
table diet. How ftrong the contrail appears in the in- 
habitant of the Punjab j thofe even of domeftic and la- 
borious profeflions, are brave, daring, and often cruel. 
Bramins are the ufual foldiers of the country, many of 
whom eat flefh meat ; and they never leave their home, 
even when not employed in military fervice, without 
weapons of offence. The merchants and mechanicks, 
when they go but a few miles abroad, are all firongly 
armed ; and in fome of the Northern provinces, parti- 
cularly in Bundilcund, the hufbandmen carry a fpear 
into the field thev are cultivating. This difference of 
difpofition has produced oppofite manners in the fame 
tribe6 of people, as well as oppofite cuftoms, which if 
not attentively inveiKgated, would afford a fpecious be- 
lief, that the inhabitants of the North and South of 
India were not connected by any national relation. 
I have to exprefs with pleafure, great obligations to 


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Colonel Poller, of the Honourable Company's fervice, 
for having furnifhed me with large hiftorical tracts of the 
Sicques, and of the life ofShujah-ud-Dowlah. On every 
application to that gentleman for other information 
of Indian hiftory, his papers and opinions have been 
liberally fupplied. I am alfo much indebted to Mr. 
Briftow, of Bengal, for a valuable manufcript memoir of 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah, from which I have extracted curious 
and ufeful matter. The prefixed chart of the road, 
calculated according to the reckoning of my journal, 
was conftru£ed by Mr. Wilford, of the Bengal corps 
of engineers, a gentleman of extenfive geographical 

Science can receive but a flender aid from the mate- 
rials of the following work. The manner in which I tra- 
velled, precluded the ufe of any inftrument to afcertain 
the diftance and bearings. The one I noted from obferv- 
ing the courfe of the fun ; the other is agreeable to the 
common computation of the country, which is not often 
found widely erroneous. My limited knowledge of bo- 
tany prevents, alfo, any accurate defcription of various 



claries of trees and plants, which I faw in KauSmire 
and Perfia. But the natural productions of thofe coun- 
tries have been fo fcientifically treated by Chardin, 
Le Bruyn, and Bernier, that my inability will be the lefs 
fenfibly felt. 






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. /. MAP 

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from LOLDONG to 

/>/ r//< Yt ftrs 
1/83 and 1784, 

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L E T T E R I. 


Benares, 3 1 ft Augujl, 1782. 


Havi NG refolved on vifiting Benares,' 
that I might, there, indulge, for a fliort time, an inveftigation 
into the mythology of the Hindoos, I procured pcrmiflion to pro- ' 
ceed to that city j and, as you may receive fome amufement from 
the relation of my journey, with the obfervations that occurred, 
I will lay it before you ; intreating, that you will make the neceflary 
allowance for a ftranger*, who, though his remarks, and the con- 

• The author is a civil fcrvant on the Madras eftaWiflunent 

Vol. I. A clufions 


clufions drawn, may partake of errors, wiU not, premeditatedly, 
difcolour the truth. 

On the 23d of May, I left Calcutta, and on the next day ar- 
rived at Sookfagur, a valuable and rifing plantation, the prope»ty 
of Meflis. Crofts and Lennox. Thefc gentlemen have eftabliftied, 
at this place, a fabrication of white cloth, of which the Company 
' provide an annual invelrmcnt, of about two lacks of rupees. They 
have alfo, founded a raw filk manufactory, which, as it bears the 
appearance of increafe and improvement, will, I hope, reward the 
induftrious and eftimable labours of it's proprietors. In this plan- 
tation, a large quantity of fpirituous liquor is made, refembling, 
in an inferior degree, the American rum, which, fince the com- 
mencement of the Dutch war, has become in great demand. Being 
applied to all the ufes of the Batavia arrack, a confiderable benefit 
it expected to arife to the Bengal province, from a current fale of 
this commodity. In juftice to thofe who enrich their country 
by an introduction of valuable manufactures, the Government 
is called upon to yield them every protection, and grant them 
every fair indulgence j it is, likewife, the duty of the man of 
obfervation, to circulate the fuccefs of fuch works, that an emu- 
lation may warm the breads of his fellow citizens, and that thofe 
who project them, may receive the tribute of applaufe, due to ge- 
niua and induftry. It muft not be omitt.d that this new efta- 
bliftiment, hath been noticed by the particular attention of the 

Government of Bengal, which, on many other occafions, has 


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evinced a zealous difpofition, 111 encouraging and promoting 
ufeful undertakings. 

The Englifli fliould no longer account themfclves fojourners 
in this country; they are now, virtually, it's lords paramount, and 
their policy mould not be that of a day * but, confidering the 
opulence and wealth of the fubject- as clofely tending to enrich 
the common ftate, they fliould, at large, fupport his wants, and 
encourage his labours. A conduct equally wife and profitable, 
would conduce to the increafe of public, and private, profperity, 
and operate as a compenfatory retribution for fome actions, which 
cannot bear the teft of inveftigation ; and which have, already, 
involved the national character in difgracc. In touching 011 this 
fubje£r, I am neceflarily led into reflections on the commerce of 
Bengal, interior and foreign, and on the common want of fpecie, 
throughout the province. 

Previously to the aera in which the Englifli became poflefled 
of Bengal, the different nations who vifited it were obliged to give 
fpecie for the greateft portion of the commodities they purchafed j 
there being but a fmall proportion of articles taken in barter by 
the natives. This fpecics of commerce, fo lucrative to India, and 
which rauft have depofited a large amount of gold and filver, con- 
tinued for upwards of a century and an half. But, after the En- 
glifli Government was eftabliflied in Bengal, the neceflity of this 
commercial fyftem no longer exifted ; the amount of the revenues 
became fumcient to purchafe the cargoes of the country, and to 

A 2 . defray 


defray the public expenditures : here, one channel of chfc infhwt ©I 
fpecie into Bengal was flopped, and it will be found, alfo, that the- 
revolutions, which in that quarter, advanced the fortunes of the- 
Englilh, have materially leflened the like imports of the other Eu- 
ropean nations, who traded to Bengal. For, cxclufively of finding 
a current fale for their commodities, they have been enabled to 


procure, from the Englifh, large fums of money, for bills on Eu- 
rope. An important change has been alfo effected on the interior 
commerce of Bengal, by the extinction of the Mahometan domi- 

The native princes, and chiefs of a various defcription, the re- 
tainers of numerous dependants, afforded a conftant employment 
to a vaft number of ingenious manufacturers, who fupplicd their 
mailers with gold and filver ftuffs, curioufly flowered, plain muf- 
lins, a diverfity of beautiful filks, and other articles of Afiatic lux- 
ury j the ufe of which, wealth, and a propenfity to a voluptuous 
life, naturally excited. Thefe Mahometan, or Hindoo, chiefs, have 
either been removed, or being no longer poffeffed of their former 
refource, have fallen into poverty and decay j and the artizanf, 
who had been fupported in their profeflions'by thefe powerful ajft& 
wealthy matters, were, on their expulfion, obliged, from a wai&.pf 
fubfiftence, to quit their profeflions, or the country. Hence, many 
branches of rare manufacture, evidently declined ; and fome of the 
mod precious are now no longer known. The diffracted and im- 
| poverilhed condition of the Moghul and Perfian empires, hath con- 

tributed a 

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tributed, eonfiderably, to leflcn the great demand which was made 
by thofe ftates, for the produce of Bengal, when Dehli and Ifpahan 
enjoyed reigns of grandeur and vigour. When it is confidered, that 
the Moghul court, whether in it's fplendour or wealth, exceeded 
that of all other nations ; that the numerous governors, interfperfed 
throughout the provinces, adopted the manners of fovereign princes 
and that all their more luxurious articles of drefs were fabricated in 
Bengal j we muff conclude, that the difcontinuation of fuch a 
traffic has produced ftrong effecls. In defcribing this commercial 
event, which has brought an evident change in the quality of the 
trade of Bengal, I am not authorized, by any fpecific knowledge, to 
fay, that a general injury has been felt by the country; prehaps, 
the lofles which have been fuftained are counterpoued by. the aug- 
mentation of the cargoes, though of a different fpecies, which are 
now tranfported, annually, to! Europe. 

Having already noticed the large influx of European fpecie, or 
bullion, in this country, and the caufe of the reflation of this traf- 
fic, I will offer fome defultory fentiments, on the fubjc£l of the di- 
minution of the coin in Bengal, of which, grevious complaints 
have long exiffed. During the Mahometan adminiftration, private 
wealth was ufually expended on the fpot where it had been ac- 
quired ; and though feverity and oppreflion might have been ex- 
ercifed in the accumulation, yet, by it's quick circulation, through 
the many channels of luxury, the country at large was improved 
and embellifhed, without any decreafe of the general currency. It 



may be urged, that the expenditvire of Europeans, in their public 
and private buildings, has, adequately, fupplied the wants of the 
artizan and labourer. But, I am led to hazard an opinion, that 
this amount falls much fliort of that applied by the preceding 
princes to the conftruction of mofques, baths, Hindoo temples, 
grand refervoirs of water, fpacious gardens, together with a variety 
of coftly private edifices. Thefe modes of expence are neither 
adapted to the genius, or inclination, of Europeans, who have no 
religious paflion to gratify, nor are they impelled, by patriot zeaf, 
to raifc monuments of grandeur in India ; but holding themfelves 
the moveable tenants of the day, they are eager to reach their na- 
tive home, that they may there enjoy the fruks of their labour* 

As the remittance of Englifh property to Europe could not be 
fufficiendy attained, by means of public bills, the fervants of the 
Company, and private merchants, have been often driven to tire 
neccflity of exporting fpecie, though fuch a medium be attended 
with heavy lofs ; or they are induced to throw their cam into fo- 
reign funds, whereby their enemies, or at leaft, their rivals, are en* 
richcd. The injurious tendency of this limitation of public remit- 
tance, having been fo feverely felt, and repeatedly reprefented to the 
fuperior Government in England, it js to be expelled that the chan* 
ncl of conveying property from India, will be opened in fo efficient 
a manner, that the necefllty of purfuin.r, in future the deftruc- 
tive alternative of exporting gold and lilver r or employing foreign 
agents, will be, wholly, obviated. As the private cam taken up in 

~ L India 

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India will be inverted in Indian produce, and fent to Europe, for 
the exprefs purpofe of difcharging the bills drawn j the polition is 
clear, excepting in the event of unforefeen calamity, that the fales 
of the cargoes, in Europe, will enable the Eaft India Company to 
difcharge the requifite payments. In teftimony of the vaft inherent 
refource of Bengal, it is neceflary to obferve, that the wealth of this 
province, which has fupported, by its millions, the Coromandel 
and Malabar coafts, foreign and domeftic wars, and the trade of 
China and Bencoolen, muft have been accumulated in the fpace of 
fixty or feventy years. 

From the period of Arungzcbe's death,* until nearly the date 
of our territorial cftabEftiments in India, when the Ivioghul Empire 
ftill prefervcd a large poflefiion of its power, the balance of the re- 
venues of Bengal, was punctually conveyed; in fpecie and-f- Bills, 
to the Imperial trcafury. The remittance of this amount has been 
known to caufe fo great a fcarcity of money, that many perfons, 
poffefled of even large property, have incurred difficulties, in de- 
fraying their domeftic expences. Though the maritime commerce 
of Bengal does not maintain the vigor which accompanied it, whiift 
the Europeans were confined to the coafts of India, and exercifed 
fimply the profeffion of merchant?, a brilk and important trade 
is yet carried on at Calcutta. The advantageous traffic that fub- 

* Th'm Prince died, A. D. 1707. 

\ A crorc of rupees, or million flcj ling, has been fent in the courfc 0/ one year 
from Lti.Q-i u Dclou 





fitted formerly between this port and Pegue, Siam, and the Malay 
iilands, now feebly remains ; and, unlefs fome favourable change is 
fpeedily effected, bears the appearance of a total failure. Though J 
thefe branches of commerce, filver bullion, gold-duft and precious - 
ftones, were introduced into Bengal } from whence, in return > 
raw and wrought filks, coarfe cotton cloths, opium, and fait petre, ' 
were exported. It hath alfo been alledged, that, within thefe late 
years, the maritime trade of Bengal has received a check from an 
embargo, or, what is tantamount, an excefllve high duty laid on the 
importation of foreign fait. This reftricYion has reduced the number 
of (hips, and leflened the confiderable exportation of grain, which, 
before that period, annually took place at the port of Calcutta :> 
yet, though it may have injured the exterior commerce, the revenue 
of the Ganges fait has been increafed, by this reftriction, to an 
amount never produced at any former period. It is painful, per-* 
haps not juft, to expatiate on the defects, or the misfortunes of a 
country, and hold them out to public view ; without propofing 
remedies for the ilia that are exhibited. The fcantinefs of my local - 
knowledge, will only permit me to fay, that as the welfare of the 
Britifli dominion in India, ultimately depends on the profperity of 
Bengal, no labour mould be thougMirkfome,.no rational plan left 
untried, which may improve its revenue, or encourage its trade. 

On the 29th of May I arrived at Berhampore. In this canton- 
ment, which is large and commodious, are (rationed three regi- 
ments of fepoys, and a battalion of Europeans. On the 15th of. 


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June, made an excurfion to Moorefhedabad, and it's environs, that 
I might view the theatre on which thofc intcrelVmg fchcmes had 
been agitated, which, after a feries of intrigue and blocd-fhcd, ad- 
vanced the Englifh to the dominion of a wealthy kingdom. 

At the diftancc of a mile below the city, and on the oppofite 
bank of the river, (lands the burying place of Ali Verdy Khan, 
known alfo in India by the name of Mahobut Jung; a man, who, 
by his abilities as a foldier and a (tatefman, raifed himfelf from a 
private condition, to the Subahdarry of Bengal. He maintained an 
obltinatc war with the Mahrattas, for the fpace of eight years, and 
was, after an obllinatc druggie, obliged to cede to them the dif- 
tricls of Kuttack. 

Not far from the tomb of Mahobut Jung, lies interred his 
nephew, Seraje-ud-Dowlah, well known in Englilli hillory, by his 
capture of Fort William, and afterwards, confining the unfortu- 
nate garrifon in a clofe dungeon ; where mod of them died from 
the feverity of their fituation. The fate of this young man was 
fimilar to that of many an Eaftern Prince ; of fuch, efpecially, who 
experience a reverfe of fortune. — Scraje-ud-Dowlah was betrayed 
by Meer JafRcr, at the battle of Plalley, and aflafiinated a fhoit 
time after, by his order. Were the conduct of Meer Jafiier to be 
tried by the law of natural aheclions, or by the rules of private 
honor, it muft appear tainted with a die of deep hue. Mahobut 
Jung, thinking to kcure to his fuccefibr the attachment of Meer 
Jaffier, beftowed on this officer, the higheft office of Government, 

Yol. I. B with 


with his fiftcr in marriage ; and on his death bed, in the moft ear- 
ned manner, deEvered the young Nabob to his tutelage and pro- 
tection. Mahobut Jung fliould have known, from fuccefsful 
experience,* that no ties are fufficicntly coercive to reflrain thft 
wild force of ambition ; particularly that fpecies of it found in an 
Aliatic breaft, which is feen to break down every fence. 

The Mollahs, who are employed here to offer up their prayers 
for the dead, faid, that the widow of Seraje-ud-Dowlah, frequently 
comes to this maufoleum, and performs certain ceremonies of 
mourning, in memory of her deceafed hufband. Moorefliedabad, 
which now bears the various marks of poverty and decay, an evi- 
dent refult of the removal of the feat of Government, is a city of 
no old date > as the refidence of the fubahs of Bengal, who, not 
many years ago, kept their court at Rajah. Mhal, about one hun- 
dred miles further up the river. The prefent Subahdar, Mubaricfc- 
ud-Dowlah, grandfon of Meer Jaffier, and fon of the Nabob- 
Mirun, who was faid to have been killed by lightening, receives an 
annual ftipend of fixteen lacks of rupees, from the Company's trea- 
fory : having never been vefted with the power, or pofTeffed of an 
afpiring temper, he is the lefs reftlefs, in his prefent Htuation. As 
the Britifti nation, in the acquifition of their pofl"efllons in Bengal,, 
have beta materially aided, by the family of Mubarick-ud-Dow- 
lah, they mould not, from any narrow fcheme of ceconomy, recede 

* He had made a fuccefsful ufe, in his attainment of power, of the various itulrumcnt* 
•f intrigue and treachery. 


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from their engagements with this prince, who, though flattered by 
■the mod indulgent attention, muft ftill have mortifying moments, 
unlefs he is wholly bereft of the fenfe of feeling, or the faculty of 
reflection. No buildings of note are fecn in the city of Moore- 
fliedabad : that which moft attracts the attention, is the cemetery ' 
t>f Meer JafHer, his begum, and the Nabob Mherun :* few things 
are more efficacious, in rcprcffing or mocking vanity, of which af- 
fection fo ample a fliare has fallen to our lot, than, difpaffionately, 
to view the repofitory of thofe who in their lives have been termed 
great men, who, " before they fliuffled off this mortal coil," in- 
flamed by pride, avarice, ambition, thought empires too narrow 
for their fcope, and that mankind were only created to become 
the inftruments of their mad defires : thefe once towering crea- 
tures, are now, per force, lodged in very moderate apartments* 
where their turbulent fchemes fleep in quiet, and their names 
are often buried in their afhes. — A tomb is one of thofe few 
appendages of a great man, in the pofleflion of which none 
envy him. 

On the 23d of June, I embarked in a boat at Moorefhedabad, 
and with a freih eafterly wind, failed up the river about 30 miles. 
The boatmen, generally Hindoos, fatten the boat to the fhore" in 
the evening, that they may eat and refrefli themfclves ; it not 
being the ufage of their feet to prepare victuals on the water. 

• I have been alfo infonncd that Mherun was interred at Rajemhal. It is n&t ufual 
among the Mahometans to erect cenotaphs. 

B 2 24th.— 


24th. — I faw the village of Jungypoce on the eaftern fhore^ 

where th; Company have eftabliflied a factory, for the manufac*' 
tu;e of raw-filk. This day our courfe was about twenty miles. 

25th.— Entered the maia branch of the Ganges : — here th« 
river affords a fpacious view, which is terminated, at the extremity 
of a long reach, by a vifta of the hills above Rajah Mhal, extend- 
ing, in a regular chain, to the north-weft. The Ganges, which at 
Sooty,* is full four miles acrofs, was that day roughly agitated by a 
ftrong wind, which heaving the waters into a fliort breaking wave, 
gave it the appearance of an arm of the fea. The riches of Bengal, 
with a large portion of the conveniency of it's inhabitants, are, in 
an eflential degree, derived from this river, which, with its numer- 
ous branches flowing through and interfering an extenfive fpace of 
country, tranfports fpecdily, and at a moderate expence, the various 
product of diftricts, towns, and villages, to places, where they are 
immediately confumed, or collected for the fupply of more diftant 
marts. The Ganges alfo affords a grand aid to the Englifli, in all" 
military operations within their own territory ; whilft their armies 
on the Coromandel and Malabar Coafts, are, from a want of pro- 
vifions and ammunition, cramped and impeded in their motions j 
and are frequently, for the obtainment of thefe fupplies, compelled 
to retreat, on the moment of reaping the full fruits of victory. 
But, the Bengal armaments are furnilhed, from their ftore boats, 

« * 

• A village near the head of the Caffimbazar river. 


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with every equipment } and the Europeans enjoy, in their camps, 
even the luxuries of life. 

In the evening, arrived at Rajah Mhal, a former residence of 
fume of the Bengal fubahdars. Ali Verdy Khan, in the beginning 
of his adminiftration, which commenced in 1742, removed the feat 
of Government from this place to Moorefliedabad. I could not 
learn the caufe of this preference ; although not deficient in en- 
quiry. The natives of India, are not much addicted to curious in- 
veftigation, and are generally inattentive to the hiftory of their own 
country. It would feem that their chief happinefs is centered, in 
enjoying the prefent hour, which abforbs every retrofpeel of the 
paft, and care of the future. Their pleafures are even indolent and 
languid, and partake of the mild influence of their climate, and the 
cafy produce of a fertile foil Ali Verdy Khan probably removed 
his capital to Moorrtiedabad, that he might keep a more vigilant 
watch over the actions of the Englifli, whom, it was faid, he fear- 
ed ; and alfo more conveniently profecute the war againft the 
Mahrattas, who had invaded his country, on the fide of the Kut- 
tack. Rajnh Mhal bears at this day an impoveriftied afpect j and 
were it not for the heaps of ruins interfperfed through the town 
and its environs, which have now mouldered into a ftatc of deep 
decay, it would be difficult to difcover, that this place had been, 
fo lately, the rr ncipal city of a powerfal and opulent chief. 
Sauntering amongft the ruine I building , I ilraytd into a Imall gar- 
den adjojiA^ tue b-nk of the river ; whac perceiving an old man, 



•employed in digging, I entered into a converfation with him. Hap- 
pening to be more intelligent than the common clafs, and agree- 
ably to the period of his life, very narrative, he afforded me much 
amufement in his relation and remarks. This old Cicerone or> 
ferved, that the very fpot which he was then cultivating, was thje 
fite of the Nobet Ghah ; or the mufic-hall of the old palace ; and 
that within his recollection, a capacious garden had extended in 
front of his little inclofure, which the Ganges had now fwept 
away. The inftability of the monuments of human grandeur can- 
not, in any region of the globe, I apprehend, be more faithfully, 
or more grievoufly exemplified than at Rajah Mhal yet I mud 
exclude from this range of ruins the convenient and hofpitable 
houfc of Mr. Cleveland, which formed a part of the Subahdar*s 

On the 26th, palled, with a frefh cafterly wind, the village of 
Sickergully, (where a heavy fwell had nearly overfet the boat) and 
obferved near it a neat building, which had been ere&ed by Mr. 
Cleveland, for the accomodation of pafiengers. 

27th. — Saw the town of Pointcc, near which, on an eminence, 
(lands an Hindoo, or Mahometan manfion ; and a mofquc, now 
apparently in difufe. Adjacent to thefe buildings, a monument has 
been raifed to the memory of a Mr. Middleton, who died there, on 
his journey to Calcutta : thefe objects would not prehaps defervc 
notice, did they not prefent pi&urefque land-marks. 

28th. — the wind being light, and the current ftrong, the men 


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were obliged to track the boat. Thefe two lall days we proceeded 
•nly about thirty miles. A11 evident danger is incurred by ap- 
proaching the banks of the Ganges during the latter f afon of the 
rain, from their frequently falling, being of great height in many 
places, and chiefly compofed of loofe foil, the weight of earth de- 
fending on a boat, would undoubtedly deftroy it. 

29th. — At noon, arrived at Jungherah, a fraall rocky if! and, on 
which (lands a feminary of Hindoo mendicants, and on one of the 
fides are feen fome figures of very ancient fculpture. A long line 
of hills, running from the fouth-eaft to the north- weft, forms. here 
a beautiful termination of a broad range of the river. It has been 
faid, that Seraje-ud-Dowlah was afiafllnated at Jungherah, whither 
he had fled for ftielter from the purfuit of Meer Jaffier j but it 
fliould feem more probable, that he was apprehended near this 
place, and carried to Moorefliedabad. 

This day, obferved the frame of a well, built of bricks, that 
flood in the middle of the ftream, with its wall in perfect condi- 
tion, full fifteen feet above the furface of the water. It muft have 
pertained to fome village, bordering on the Ganges j now deftroyed 
by the encroachment of it's flood. 

Proceeded this day, about 35 miles, and in the evening, faw 
Monghecr, where I arrived the next day. The fort is in a decayed 
condition, as well as the private buildings, which are uninhabited- 
The fituation, which occupies a flat of great extent towards the • 
weilward > and has the Ganges on the north,, is equally well choien 



for defence, and conveniency. One of the angle baftions commands 
a beautifully winding view of the river, which is clofed by a range 1 
of diftant hills. It appears that the prefent fort of Mongheer 
was built by Sultan Shujah, the fecond fon of Shah Jehan,* who 
governed the provinces of Bahar and Ecngal, and was held in high 
eftimation by the natives, for his liberality and equitable admini- 
ftration. As fome relation of Sultan Shujah, (efpecially of the lat- 
ter period of his life, which was involved in a feries calamity) may 
excite your attention, and enable me to offer up a tribute of pity to 
the memory of an unfortunate, but gallant, prince, I will lay it be- 
fore you, agreeably to the memoirs of M. Bernier, one of the moft 
accurate and ingenious writers, on the hiftory of Hindoftan. 

After the battle of Alhabad, in which he had been worfted, 
Sultan Shujah retired into the interior parts of Bengal, with his 
army, where he made a vigorous ftand againft the arms of the Em-, 
peror.-f- Bemier fays, " There remained, now, no other thorn in 
" the fide of Aurungzebe, than Sultan Shujah, who ftill main- 


" tained himfelf in Bengal ; but he was at length forced to yield 
2 to the power and fortune of his brother. 

" Amir Kumla,J by the numerous bodies of troops that had 

• This Prince caufed a broad and deep trench to be cut from the river to the hills, very 
(perceptible traces of which are now to be feen) for the more efFe&ually defending this 
poft againft the attack of Aurungzebe's army, which had purfucd him from the upper 
parts of the country. 

t Aurungzebe. 

% The Officer commanding the expedition againft Sultan Shujah. 

" joined 

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" joined him, was enabled to hem in the army of Sultan Shujah, 
" on both fides of the Ganges, and to compel that prince to feek 
" refuge at Dacca, a town fituate on the extremity of Bengal, to- 
" wards the fea fide and here, enfues the conclufion of the tragedy. 
" The Sultan Shujah, being deftitute of fhips to put to Tea, and 
" not knowing whither to fly, fent his eldcft fon, Sultan Banque, 
" to the King of Racan,* or Mug, who was of Heathen religion, 
" to know, whether he might be permitted to take fhelter in his 
" country, for a certain time, and when the monfoon, or periodi- 
*' cal winds fhould fet in, whether he could be furnifhed with a 
* veflel, to carry him to Mecca, from whence he intended pafllng 
" into fome part of Turkey, or Perfia. Sultan Banque returned to 
u Dacca, with fome galleaffes, manned, with Feringhis, Imean,thofe 
u fugitive Portuguefe chriftians, who had entered into the fervice of 
M the King of Racan, and were employed in no other bufinefs 
" than ravaging the lower parts of Bengal. The young man re- 
porting to his father, that he had been kindly received, and had 
M full aflurances of protection, and afliftance given him ; Sultan 
41 Shujah, with his family, confiding of three fons, daughters, and 
" their, mother, embarked at Dacca. On their arrival at Racnn, 
" they were treated with much civility, and provided with fuch 
** neceflaries, requifite for their fubfiftence, as the country afford- 
" ed j in the name of the King. Some months pafs away, the 

• More commonly known by the name of A racan. * 

Vol. I. C " fcafon 


" fcafon of the favorable winds alfo approach, but no mention is 
«* made of the veflel, though the Sultan required it, on no other 
" terms than the payment of the hire, for he, yet, wanted not ru- 
" pees of gold and filver, or gems. — He had, indeed, too great a 
u plenty of them, bis wealth being, in all appearance, the caufe of 
M his ruin, or at leaft, contributing much to it. This prince 
«« might long enough have folicited for a fhip all was in vain ; he 
11 effected nothing.— .On the contrary, the King began to (hew 
" great coldnefs, and to complain of his not coming to fee him. 
" I know not whether Sultan Shujah thought it unworthy of 
" himfelf, and too great a condefcenfion to vifit this King ; or 
11 rather, whether, he feared, that being in the power of their 
*' chief, his perfon might be feized on, for the purpofe of plunder- 
" ing his treafure, and that he himfelf might be delivered into the 
" hands of Amir Kumla, who had offered, in the name of Au- 
" rungzebc, large fums of money, with other confiderable advan- 
tages, for obtaining the pofieflion of this unfortunate family. 
" Whatever might have been the caufe, Sultan Shujah did 
" not go thither, but fent his elded fon j who, on approaching 
u the dwelling of the King, began to difplay his liberality to the 
" people, by throwing amongft them a confiderable quantity of 
" rupees of gold and filver, and when he came before the King, he 
" prefented him with rich embroideries, and rare pieces of gold- 
" fmith's work, fet with precious ftones of great value ; excufing 
M at the fame time, on account of fomc illnefs, his father, in 

" whole 

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" whofe name he had now to entreat, that the fliip, which had 
" been promifed, might be held in readinefs. But, all that the 
n Prince had done, had not advanced his bufinefs ; on the con- 
** trary, this King, in the courfe of five or fix days after, made a 
" demand of one of the daughters of Sultan Shujah, in marriage, 
" in which the father refolving never to acquiefce, the King be- 
*« came highly offended. 

" Sultan Shujah feeing the feafon for failing had pafled away, 
" and perceiving the fituation in which he was then placed was a 
" defperate one, determined on purfuing equally defperate mea- 
" fures, and undertook the performance of an action, which may 
" afford a great example of the efforts of defpair. Although this 
" King -of Racan, in his religion, is a Pagan, there are marty 

* Mahometans, mixed with the people, who have either chofen td 
*' retire amongft them, or have been enflaved by the Portuguefe 
" before mentioned, in their expeditions to the neighbouring 
*• codft*. Sultan Shujah fecretly gained thefe men, whom he 
" joined with two or three hundred of his own own people, the 
" remainder of thofe who followed him from Bengal ; and with 

* this force he refblved to furprize the houfe of the King, put his 
M family to the fword, and make himfelf fovereign of the country. 
" This bold attempt, which refemWed more the enterprize of a 
" defperado, than that of a prudent man, yet, had, from the iri- 
« telligence I cofleaed from many Muffulmen, Portuguefe, and 
" Hollanders, who were then on the fpot, a certain feafibility in 

C 2 M it. 


M it. But the day before the blow was to be given, a difcovcry 
u was made of the defign, wliich altogether ruined the affairs of 
" Sultan Shujah, and involved in it the deftruttion of his family. 
" For, after this failure, having no further hope of retrieving his 
11 fortune, he endeavoured to efcape into Pegu ; a purpofe, in a 
w manner impoflible to be effefted, by reafon of the vaft moun- 
u tains and forefts that lay in the way j befides, they purfued him 
" fo clofely, that he was overtaken, the fame day on which he 
" fled. It may be well imagined, that Sultan Shujah defended 
*• himfelf, with the molt obftinate courage. The number of Bar- 
" barians that fell under his fword will fcarcely be credited ; but 
at length, overpowered by the multitude of his enemies, he 
" was forced to quit the combat. Sultan Banque, who had not 
" advanced as far as his father, fought like a lion, until covered 
" with the blood of the wounds he received from the (tones, that 
" had been (howered upon him from all fides, he was feized on, 
" and carried away, with his mother, two young brothers, and 
" his fitters. AH that could be learned of the fate of Sultan Shu- 
'* jah, himfelf, was, that, accompanied by one woman, an eunuch, 
" and two other perfons, he afcended the top of a mountain $ 
" that he was wounded on the head with a ftone, which ftruck 
" him down ; but that the eunuch having bound up the wound, 
" with his own turban, he aroie again, and efcaped into the midft 
" of the woods. This relation I have heard recounted in many 
« different ways, by thofc even that weje on the lpot» which gave 

■' rife 

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« rife td>a wiety of reports of this Prince, and fpread frequent 
a alarms, at ithe, court of DchVV lf 

T«i& writer* after giving a detail of the many conjc&ures, that 
were formed of the fate of Sultan Shujah, mentions, that he tra- 
velled from Bengal to Mafuljpatam, with an eunuch of that 
Prince, and his former commandant of artillery, who tol4 him 
that Sultan Shujah was dead, but obferved a drift referve in com- 
municating any farther information. Mr. Bernier luppofes, that if 
Sultan Shujah was not flain, on the place of action, he muft have 
died, foon after ; falling either into the hands of robbers, or a prey 
to the wild beafls, with which the forefts of that country abound. 

Subsbquently to this event, the remaining branches of the 
family were thrown into prifbn, where they were treated with much 
rudenefe ; but after fome time, Bernier fays, they received a milder 
treatment, which was chiefly caufed by the marriage of the eldefr. 
daughter of Sultan Shujah, with the King of Racan. The fequel 
of this event fets forth, that the fervants of the Sultan Banque 
were difcovered in forming another confpiracy, with thofe Maho- 
metans, who have been already noticed, and that the King being 
now violently exafperated againft this unfortunate family, ordered 
it to be extirpated j nor did any branch remain, excepting the 
Princefs, whom he had efpoufed.* 


* I have been the more iuduced to infert this relation of the fate of Sultan Shujah, 
» it places the conclnfion of « curious hiltorical paf&ge, in a point of view, different 



Cassum Ali Khan, in the laft years of his government, retired 
to the fort of Mongheer, and actuated by a keen rcfentment againft 
the Englifh, for their extennve encroachments on his authority, 
and the commerce of his country, he formed the plan of throwing 
off their yoke, and annihilating their influence in Bengal. In ad- 
dkion to thefe motives, he was urgently incited to the attempt by 
the officers of his court and army, who were neceflarily alarmed 
at the diminution of their power and lucrative appointments. 
Amongft the foremoft of thefe, we find the Armenian Khojah 
Oregore, who, contrary to the ufage of his country-men, had af- 
fumcd the profeflion of arms, and had rifen to high rank and con- 
fidence, in the fcrvice of Caflum Ali. He feems, with Sumroo, to 
have borne a principal part in the war againft the Englifh, which 
ultimately involved, as is well known, the ruin of Caflum, and 
the deftruction of the Mahometan dominion in Bengal. Greeore 
alfo loft: his life, for on a fufpicion of intriguing with the Arme- 
nians of Calcutta he was cut off, previoufly to the expulfion of his 
mafter. With Caflum Ali * ended, virtually, the power of the 


from that defcribed by a late writer (Col. Dow) on the Empire of Hindooftin j who, 
however well-founded his claims to accuracy, could not have attained the poflef&on of 
more authentic documents, than a perfon, who was himfelf brought forward into the 
adtion of the day, and whofe writings for the fpace of more than 100 years, have borne 
the teft of truth. 

• Caflum Ali Khan, after wandering about the upper provinces, and folkiting the 
aid of various chiefs againft the f.nglifh, fought protection at the Court of Dehli. He 
evinced the tunc intriguing and languinary difpofition in dome/lie life, as had marked 


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fubahdars of Bengal. Mecr Jaffier, in his laft adminiftration, 
made a feeble attempt to refume his authority, but it foon termi- 
nated in his death, and in leaving the Englifli the fupreme rulers of 
an extenfive and valuable territory. 

I mould be ill intitled to a place, even amongft the mofl: trite 
obfervcrs, did 1 not, before I quitted this part of the country, 
throw my mite into the fund of general applaufe which has been 
bellowed on Mr. Cleveland. This gentleman, whom I never law, 
but whofe works loudly proclaim his merit, and diffufc his praife, 
has by an equitable and judicious management of the Rajah Mhal 
and Bauglepour diftricls, considerably increafed the number of in- 
habitants, and improved, as well as facilitated, the collection of 
the revenue. The increafe of population is confpicuoufly feen in 
the dependency of Mongheer, and in the extenfive mercats of that 
place, which are refortcd to by a concourfe of various traders. He 
hath alfo made ftrenuous exertions, in drawing the adjacent, 
Mountaineers, from their fartneffes to the plains. Nor have his 
labours failed of fuccefs. Twelve hundred of thefe men have en- 
tered into our fervice, and are embodied in a corps, whioh bears 
the appearance of becoming ufeful to the ftate. The indulgent 

his public character. He endeavoured, it Is faid, to fupplant the Minifter at Dehli, by 
an offer of a large donation to the King ; and he is accufed of murdering, at different 
times, the women he carried with him from Bengal. At his death, which happened at 
the village of Kutwall, in 1777, the Court feized on his cftatc, the value of which 
was computed at mi tbwjmd founds ;— a final! rcfidue of the plunder of Bengal and 



treatment (hewn them with the fuperior advantages, which they 
derive, mud operate as powerful inducements to their brethren, 
m following fo profitable an example. The depredations of thefe 
people had, at former periods, rendered the paflage of the roads 
in that quarter fo unfafe, that efcorts were ftationcd at certain 
pofts, for the protection of travellers; and detachments of two 
and three battalions, have occafionally been fent againft the favage 
inhabitants of the Bauglepour hills ; who arc now become the 
guardians of a country, which they had long wafted, by rapine 
and bloodflied. 

Mr. Cleveland has eftablifhed fmall buildings, at moft of the 
halting places within his diftricts, for the accommodation of tra- 
vellers ; and the natives of thofe parts, who feem to have profited 
by the conduct of their chief, are peculiarly attentive to ftrangers. 


Such have been the advantages, which the ftate, and a body of 
people have derived, from the public fpirit, and the benevolent 
efforts of one man ! But his reward hath been bounteous and 
complete. He hath enjoyed the honour of exalting, in a diftant 
land, the character of his nation, and felt fenfations which tran- 
sport the mind beyond the reach of fortune. 

On the 3d of July, I left Monghcer ; and arrived, on the 5th, 
at Patna, by water. This city is fpacious and populous, though 
much fallen from the importance it held, during the refidence of 
the Subahdar of Bahar. The great quantity of poppies cultivated 
in the contiguous diftricts, from which opium of an excellent 


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qanlity is produced, together with extenfive falt-petre works, have 
rendered Patna opulent, and the center of an extenfive commerce. 
The different manufactures of iilver, iron, and wood, are little 
inferior in this city, to thofe of Europe ; and when the rude- I 
nefc of the tools, with the fimplicity of the procefs, is examin- 
ed, the degree of delicacy which the artifans have acquired in 
their fcreral profeflions, muft challenge a high admiration. 
. The numerous ruins of public and private edifices, fcattered 
through the town of Patna, and its environs, indicate a former 
grandeur and extent, which now no longer exift. An ancient 
name of this place, ftill known to fomc of the more intelligent 
inhabitants, and bearing an affinity to that given, by Strabo and 
Pliny, to the fuppofed capital of India, has fuggefted an opinion, 
that Pataa occupies the fituation of the celebrated Palibertha • 
which js farther fubftantiated by the geographical obfervations of 
Major Rennel. — Curiofity, and the defirc of the moment. to indulge 
a melancholy idea, led me to the fpot, where the Englifti were 
maflacred by the order of CatTum AIL The former buildings are 
removed, ana a well proportioned monument nas been erected in 
commemoration of that dreadful event, though without any in- 
fcription. Perhaps it had been confident with founder policy, 
that no fuch memorial had been fixed » but as it was judged 
expedient to record, thus publicly, an act of treacherous cruelty, 
the caufe, I think, Ihould have been explained. 

On the 13th of July, I left Patna, and on the fame day arrived 
Vol. I. D at 


at Muzufferpour, the refidencc of the Collector of Tirhoot, an 
extenfivc diftricl, about forty miles to the northward of Patna, and 
producing a revenue of about fix and a half lacks of rupees. 

In the neighbourhood of MuzufFerpour, an action was fought 
ifn 1760, between Mherim, the eldeft fon of Meer Jaffier, aflifted 
by the Englifti troops, and Kadim Huffein Khan, the chief of 
Purnea, in which the latter was defeated. A few days after the 
engagement, Mherim died, ftruck, it was faid, by lightening. 
The father believed that his fon had been cut off by an aflaffin, 
and he loudly accufcd Caflum Ali of the murder. The event 
having removed a flrong bar to Caffum's ambition, and there alfo ap- 
pearing fome fufpicious circumftances, attending the alledged caufe 
of his death, Meer Jaffier may be juftified in believing, that his fon 
nad been taken off, by an avowed rival, who was feen at a fubfe- 
quent period, indulging an implacable and fanguinary temper. 
. On the 30th of July, croffed the country, and went to Chop- 
rah, a long ftraggling town, lying on the northern fide of the 
Ganges, about twenty miles above Patna. Choprah is the reft* 
dence of the Collector of Sarun and Champoran j diftri&s yielding 
an annual revenue of fourteen and an half lacks of rupees. The 
French and Dutch had* fa&ories at this place, chiefly for the pur- 
pofe of manufacturing falt-petre, in which commodity this part of 

• This letter was written during the war with Fiance and Holland, when theft 
{daces had been captured by the Englifh. 


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the country profufely abounds. It is not unworthy of notice to 
remark, that the Dutch, though obliged to purchale the greater 
portion of their crude falt-petre from the Englilh, were enabled to 
fell it in its purified ftate, at a lower rate than that manufactured 
by the Englifli Company, and of a fuperior quality. This com- 
mercial advantage, may be afcribed to the rigid fyftem of cccono- 
my obferved by the Dutch in all their operation?, and to a perfe- 
vering attention to bufinefs, with which that people feem confti* 
tutionally endowed. 

On the 12th of Auguft, left Choprah, and on the 17th arrived 
by water at Buxar. It was in the vicinity of this place that Cafllim 
Ali, joined by Shujah-ud-Dowlah, with the whole of that Prince's 
army, made his laft effort againft the arms of the Englifh. The 
fuperior numbers of the enemy who crowded the plains of Buxar, 
availed them little, when oppofed to the fmall, but well arranged, 
and determined body of the Englifli } who after a fmart action of 
two hours, completely routed the combined forces, and captured 
the whole of their artillery. This aftion, heretofore fo amply 
described, had not perhaps now been adverted to, but for the im- 
pulfe of an earneft defire of imprinting anew on your memory, 
the fervices performed on that day by the Britifh troops j to whom 
their country {lands indebted for a fingular exaltation of its 
fame, and the acquifition of folid benefits. 

The fort of Buxar, which, though fmall, is yet fufficiently 
tenable to refill the common attacks of a native power, (lands 

Da on 


on the exterior limits of the Bahar province. The prefent Com- 
mandant has added to the ftrength of the fort by fome late im- 
provements ; and for a more extenfive protection of the inhabi- 
tants of the adjacent town, he has cncompaficd a wide fpacc to the 
eaftward of the fortifications, with a rampart and ditch. 

The curiofities to be feen at Buxar are few, and, excepting 
one, not worthy of enumeration. But this one, the Hindoos hold 
in a degree of eftimation not inferior to that of the Neapolitans 
for the blood of Saint Januarius, or thofe of their faith in gene- 
ral for the holy houfe at Loretto. The monument in queftion, 
which is erected on a fmall mount to the weftward of the 
fort, is facred to the memory of the Gojd Ram, who is feen 
occafionally officiating as the Mars of the Hindoos ; and is faid to 
have the direction of war and victory. It would appear, that Ram, 
whilft a youth, made a vifit to this eminence, and tarried on it 
for the fpace of fevcn days, where he was taught from fome learned 
m after of the fcience, the art of managing the bow, and wonder- 
ful were his feats with this weapon in after times : indeed, were 
the moft moderate of them to be recorded, it would be readily ad- 
mitted without torturing the phrafe, that Ram " drew a long 
? bow," 

At the diftance of two miles to the weftward of Buxar,. the 
Torin Nullah, a rivulet which falls into the Ganges, terminates 
the province of Bahar, and divides it from Benares. Though 
the Caramnafla river, from being of greater note than the Nullah, 


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and running contiguous to it, is generally denominated the boun- 
dary. In crofling this river on fcrvice, the officers on the Bengal 
eftablifhment become intitled to a double portion of their ufual 
pay, for the better enabling them to defray the extraordinary 
expences incurred in countries far diltant from the fca coafts, 
and where European articles, from the charges of conveyance, fell 
at an advanced price. 

The view from Buxar into the Benares province, prefents a 
fcene of infinite gratification to the fenfe. You fee an extended 
plain fltirted by a broad winding river, and chequered with exu- 
berant fields of corn, groves of lofty fpreading trees, and large 
villages } the whole combines in it fome of the grandeft objects in 
nature, and impreffes the mind with cheerfulnefs and content. 

Left Buxar on the 23d, and arrived on the 26th at Benares, 
to which city from Mongheer, the diftance by water is about 280 

In the relation of this failing excurfion through the provinces, 
you will doubtlefs fee many inaccuracies. You will likewife fee 
that I have too narrowly circumfcribed the defcription of a coun- 
try, which with a fertility that conveys the idea of plenty, and 
national fecurity, holds out to the eye, a grand and various fcope 
of the moft beautiful imagery. 

I am, Dear Sir, 

Yours, &c, &c. 





Benares, 30/^ September, 1782. 


. . . '■ 

H AVING given you a curfory detail of 
my journey from Calcutta to Benares, with the remarks that oc- 
cured ; I will now lay before you the refult of my enquiries and 
observations at this place. Should errors arife in the inveftiga- 
tion of a fubjeft, hitherto (lightly difcufTed, and, from its exten- 
five variety, perplexed and abftrufc, I mult entreat an indulgent 
eyej and though miftaken in my opinions, I prefume to hope 
for fome commendation, were it only for endeavouring to ad- 
minifter a rational pleafure. 

The city of Benares, for its wealth, coftly buildings, and the 
number of its inhabitants, is elated in the firft of thofe now 
remaining in the pofleffion of the Hindoos. To defcribe with 
a due degree of prccifion the various temples dedicated at Be- 
nares, to the almoft innumerable deities, and to explain the ori- 
gin of their foundation with the neceffary arrangement, would 
require a knowledge far fuperior to mine in the myfterious fub- 
je£l of Hindoo Mythology. It is at this day enveloped in fuch 


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deep obfcurity, that even thofe pundits the moft Ikilfully verfed 
in the Sanfcrit,* are not able to render it moderately compre- 
henfible to the generality of people. 

But as fome relation of a city fo famous in Hindooftan, 
and now fo well known in Europe for fupplying one of the 
grand fources of the religious worfhip of the Hindoos, and being 
the chief repofitory of the fcience yet exifting among them, may 
not be unacceptable to you, together with a curfory investigation 
of the Mythology of Brimha > the taflc (hall be attempted with 
attention to the object, and, I truft, with a ftrid adherence to 

At the di fiance of eight miles from the city of Benares, as it 
is approached on the river, from the eaftward, the eye is attracted 
by the view of two lofty minarets, which were erected by Au- 
rungzebe, on the foundation of an ancient Hindoo temple, dedi- 
cated to the Mhah Deve. The conftruction on this facred ruin of 
fo towering a Mahometan pile, which from its elevated height, 
feems to look down with triumph and exultation on the fallen 
ftate of a city fo profoundly revered by the Hindoos, would ap- 
pear to have been prompted to the mind of Arungzebe, by a 
bigotted and intemperate defue of infulting their religion. If fuch 
was his wifli, it hath been completely fulfilled. For the Hindoos 

■ • 

• The language in which the fccred legends Of the Hindoos have been prcferved. 




confider this monument, as. the difgraceful record of a foreign yoke, 
. proclaiming to every ftranger, that their favorite city has been de- 
bafed, and the worfhip of their gods defiled. From the top of 
the minarets is feen the entire profpecT: of Benares, which occupies 
a fpace of about two miles and an half along the northern bank 
of the Ganges, and generally a mile in-land from the river. Many 
of the houfes, which are remarkably high, fome of them having 
fix and feven floors, are built of ftone, refembling that fpecies 
found in the quarries of Portland,* and which abounds in this 
part of the country. But the ftreets where thefe lofty buildings 
ftand, are fo narrow as not to admit of two common carriages 
abreaft. In addition to the pernicious effedc which muft proceed 
from a confined atmofphere, there is in the hot feafon, an intoler- 
able ftench arifing from the many pieces of ftagnated water dif- 
perfed in different quarters of the town, whofe waters and borders 
are appropriated to the neceflary ufes of the inhabitants. The filth 
alfo, which is indifcriminately thrown into the ftreets, and there left 
expo fed, (for the Hindoos poftefs but a final 1 portion of general 
cleanlinefs), add to the compound of ill fmells, fo often five to the 
European inhabitants of this city. The irregular and comprefled 
manner which has been invariably adopted in forming the ftreets 
of Benares, has deftroyed the effects which fymmetry and arrange- 

• The Benares or Chunar-Ghur ftone, is dofer grained and deeper coloured, than 
that of Portland. 


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mcnt would have other wife bellowed on a city, intitled from its 
valuable buildings, to a preference of any capital which 1 have feen 
in India. 

In my refcarch into the principles of the Hindoo religion, I 
received great aid from a converfant knowledge of the Marharta 
language, and an acquaintance, though very trivial, with the San- 
fcrit. The ufe of this laft tongue, now chiefly confined to a parti- 
cular feft of Bramins, who officiate in the character of priefts, hath 
ever been made the channel of conveying to the Hindoos, the ef- 
fential tenets of their religion, with all the various forms of their 
worftiip. The Sanfcrit is a fonorous language, abounding in pith 
and concifenefs j and its periods flow with boldnefs, and terminate 
in a cadence peculiarly mufica!. An extract of a floke, or ftanza, 
which has been quoted by Mr. Halhed, is a ftriking teftimony of 
the nervous composition, and the laconic turn of the Sanfcrit. 
Being compofed of only four lines, I will infert it, and endeavour 
to give the tranflation literally, and in verfe. 


renervan — 



in debt — 



flietroo — 



enemy — 

extravagant, or immoral. 


rupervuttee — 



beautiful — 



flietroo — 



enemy — 


Vol. I. 




The Mother who hath loft her fame, 
The Sire profufe and foe to ftiame, 
Are to their race a peft : 
A Bride's fbft joys oft' thorns implant. 
And he who roams in Folly's haunt, 
Deftroys his Father's reft 

The Hindoos believe in one God, without beginning and with- 
out end, on whom they beftow, defcriptive of his powers, a va- 
riety of epithets. But the moft common appellation, and which 
.conveys the fublimeft fenfe of his greatnefs, is, Srce Man Nar- 
rain.* The Hindoos, in their iupphcation to the Deity, addrefs 
him as endowed with the three attributes of omnipotence, omni- 
prefence, and omnifcience, which in the Sanfcrit are cxptefXed by 
the terms, Neerangin, Ncerakar, and Neergoon. Though theft 

• There is rcafon to believe, that in the more early periods of time, before the 
priefts of the Hindoos had found it expedient, for the firmer cftablilhment of their 
{Way over the minds of the people, to raife a huge fuperftuclure of emblematical wor- 
fhip, the temples cre&ed to the Supreme Being were plain, and void of perfonification ; 
the remains of one of thefc are now to be fcen on the fummit of a hill, near the city 
of Kafhmire , which, according to tradition, had been dedicated to the Creator of 
the woildj in which the prayers of thofc who entered, were addrcfled to the Deity 
without fupplicating the interceflion of an intermediate agent, and where no image, or 
fymbol of Divine power, had a place. A gentleman of cufious refearch on the coaft 
of Coromandel, informed me, that at Chilembrrum, aboat 20 miles to the fouthward 
of Cudalore, he law a religious Hindoo edifice, plain, and without any interior figure, 
which was devoted to the worfhip of ** the Invifible God," and was never approached 
but with tokens of profound awe and reverence. 


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terms may not in fit:rary ftnctrrcfs, comprife the precIC- meaning 
of the Englifli text, they convey it virtually, and in the ampleft 
fenfc. The Hindoos likewife believe, that the Supreme Deity 
poffeflcs a three-fold form, the parts of which are faid to be fepa- 
rate. It is compofed of Siee Mun Narrain, who is fuppofed to 
reprefent a human form j the Alhah Letchinry, defcribed as a 
beautiful woman j and a ferpent, on which the Deity is featcd. 
This emblematical affemblage, a fymbol of flrrength, love, and 
wifdom, according to the Hindoo faith, is wholly fpiritual, and is 
never rcprefented in their temples by any object of matter : they 
fay it is indivifible, and of infinite fpace.* 

In the beginning, the Hindoos believe that the Deity created 
three men, to whom he gave the names of Brimha, Vyftnow, and 
Shevah.'f* To the firft was committed the power of creating man- 
kind ; — to the fecond of cherilhing them j — and to the third, that 
of reftraining, correcting, and deltroying them.J Brimha at one 
breath formed the human kind out of the four elements, amongft 
which he htfufed, if I underftand the interpretation, and may be 
allowed the term, a vacuum. § 


• 1*ertiaf>< the myfterioiu Ttyad of Plato, who made a fret ufe of Eafrem taw- 

ledge, may have bee a formed fro* Indian material*. 

t Called dfa Eilhever, and the Mhab Deve. 

J In the capacity of Mhah Drv-., he if denominated « The Deftruflive Power." 

f The word in the Sanfcrit language, it akajb, the proper fignificntion of vrhrch, 

E 2 lbe- 



Before the creation of man, Srec Mun Narrain formed the 
world out of a perplexed aggregation of matter, which had been 
covered with the waters, and inhabited by a demon, the fuppofed 


I believe, I was not at the time, accurately informed of; for it mould fcem, that Hin- 
doos do not admit of a vacuum, in their fyftem of nature :—akaJb means, in a general 
acceptation, aerial fpace ; but in the prefent fenfe, I am induced to think that it is de- 
signed by the Hindoos, to denote the grand vivifying principle, termed in ancient fa* 
ble, the Promethean fire, fuppofed to have animated the human body. In this note, 
it may not be unintcrefting to introduce a tenet of the Egyptian theological philofo- 
phers, which correfponds with the idea I have formed of the aiojb of the Hindoos, 
and alfo, certain opinions entertained by them of the formation of the world, and the 
creation of animated bodies. Thefe philofophical priefts, who profefled the tenets of 
Menes, their firft law-giver, (whom thev had deified and entitled, Ofiris, or the fun), 
(aid that fire, or rather, a refined fpirit, which they diftinguilhcd from the elemental 
fire, was diffufed through all nature, and compofed the eflence of that being, who firft 
gave form and order to matter. They believed that five elements— the mind, fire, 
air, earth, and water, conftituted the entire world : they called the mind Jupiter, which 
fignifies the fource of life, and they confidered him the father of all intelligent beings. 
The fire they termed Vulcan, who they alledged, contributed chiefly to the production 
and perfection of all things. Earth, being as it were the bofom in which all things re- 
ceive the principles of life, was known by the designation of Mother. The water 
was called Ocean, to which they gave the name of the Nurfing Mother. The air 
was denominated Minerva, and believed to be the daughter of Jupiter, fprung from 
his brain, and always a virgin, as this element is incorruptible and rifes to Heaven.— 
The Egyptian philofophers fuppofed, that all the original matter of the untverfe had 
been immerged in a chaos, and was gradually Separated from it by fermentation ; that 
the air was in continual agitation j that the fire, liberated from the grofler matter, had 
afcended, and formed the fun and flars, the higheft objects of the univerfe j that fpirir, or 
the mind, the moft fubtile part of fire, was difperfed through all parts, to animate life, 
and impart voluntary motion. They added, that the earth and water, which after the 
feparation of the air were vet embodied, became a globe, which constantly revolving 
on it's axis, by a motion excited by the fire the Separation of the two bodies was ef- 
fected ; and that the rays of the fun, making new fermentation* on the furface of the 


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author of evil, whom the Godhead drove into an abyfs under the 

The Hindoos, as Mr. Halhed in his tranflation of the Code 
of Hindoo Laws has fully fet forth, are arranged in four grand 
cafts, or tribes ; -f that of the Bramin, the Chittery, the Bhyfe, 
and the Sooder. Each of thefe cafts is fubdivided into numerous 
fedts, the particular ufages of which are preferred with care and 
attentive diftin&ions. There are fe&aries, alfo of the fame tribe, 
who do not admit of the intercourfe of marriage with each other, 

earth, yet foft and (limy, produced numerous excreflences, which, nourifhed and 
irrengthened by the grofs vapours of the night, — the aclion of the moon,— and after- 
wards, by the heat of the day, appeared at length, in the forms of different animals. 
Thofe in whom the fire predominated, mounted into air, and became birds : thofe 
which participated more of earth, as men, quadrupeds— and reptiles, remained on the 
furface, while the more aqueous fubftances defcended to the waters, their proper place 
of abode. It was neceflary to give reafons, why nature had ftopped in her primary 
operations, and did not form many more animal creatures, as the manner of formation 
had been fo fimple and eafy. Systematic philofophy, even in its infancy, did not want 
refource ; and that of the Egyptians has met the objection, by urging, that nature had 
originally infpired every fpecies of animals with the inftinS of propagation j having 
fagely fbrefeen, that when the fun and the winds had entirely dried the earth, it would 
be incapable of producing perfea animals,— See Mr. Labbaibicr's Hiftory of Ancient 
Nations, tranflated by Mr. Stockdalc. 

* The writers of the Hindoo mythology, have given various and diffufe defcrip- 
tions of the origin of the world, and of the human and animal race, but unite in 
blending them with a feries of extravagant and difguffing fables. 

+ There is in India an aboriginal race of people, who are not claffed in any of the 
feels, and confined to the raoft menial offices. They are not permitted to enter any 
temple of the Hindoos, and they obferve no reftri&ion. On fome parts of the coaft 
of Coromandcl, they are called Dhcrdand Pariahs j and, in Bengal, Harecs. 




or of eating at the fame board. It (hould feem, that the genuine 
race of the Chittery has for a great length of time been extinct, 
and that its place is now occupied by a ipurious tribe. The Hin- 
doos compofing thefe cads and claftes, are ultimately branched in 
two divifions ; the one denominated Vyftnow Bukht ; the other, 
Sheva Bukht. The followers of the former deity are ufually dif- 
tingutfhcd by a longitudinal mark on the forehead, whilrt thofe of 
the latter draw a parrallel Kne on that part. Vyftnow is worfhip- 
ped under the reprefentation of a human figure, having a circle of 
heads, and four hands ; emblems of an all-feeing and all provident 
Being. The figure of a fabulous bird, on which he is fuppofed 
to ride, and denoting the velocity of his motion, is occafionally 
placed in front of this image. Sheva, or Eifhwer, and as he is often 
denominated by the Hindoos, the Mhah Deve, is ufually repre- 
fented by a compound figure, defcribing the male and female parts 
of generation, and defigned as the iymbol of procreation and fe- 
cundity : thefe faculties, or qualities, being claflfed amongft the 
choiccft ble&ngs of the Hindoos, and the deprivation of them 
deemed a fevere reproach and misfortune. Facing this defignarion 
of Mhah Deve, is fomctimes feen, in a fuppliant pofture, the fta- 
tue of a cow, or bull : an animal faid to have derived his facred 
qualities, from having been chofen by this god, as the favourite 
medium of his conveyance. But the more enlightened pundits fay, 
that this creature hath been preferved from flaughter, by its great 
utility to man it being his ableft aiMant in the labours of the 


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field, and the chief provider of his immediate fuftenance * It 
doubtlefs argues a found policy in the Hindoos, to ftamp the ox 
with this facred mark j for were its flefli eaten, as Hindoftan is 
thinly fupplied with horfes, the various branches of agriculture 
would fuffer an cffcntial injury. 

Another figure reprefents Sheva, with four hands, holding dif- 
ferent emblems of his power ; and five heads, four of which are 
directed to the cardinal points, and the fifth is placed with the 
face upwards, in the fuppofed aft of contemplating the godhead. 
This deity who occupies numerous forms, is figured alfo with 
three eyes, one of which is placed in the forehead. 

In gratitude for the fervice which Brimha has performed on 
earth, it would reafonably be fuppofed, that the thankfgiving of 
his people would in fomc degree be proportioned to his works. 
But the Hindoos have not dedicated one temple to his honor ; nor 
have they eftabliflied a finglc feftival, in remembrance of his deeds. 
It would redound but little to my credit, did I infert in this place 
the reafons alledged in their religious tra&s, for the negledl of 
Brimha. It is a tale framed to amufe the credulous Hindoo, and 
procure a meal to an artful prieft. The oftenfible want of atten- 
tion to the memory of Brimha, may on a more abftracled ground 
be afcribed to an opinion, that the powers of procreation having 
been primarily fct in action, and operating by a law impulfive 

• Mlik and butter cwnpofc a great part of the aliment of an Hindoo. 



and undeviating, whofe immediate benefits cxift, and are con- 
fpicuoufly difplayed in its effects, no ritual neceflity called for 
the commemoration of its firft caufe, or the propitiation of its 
future influence. 

The Hindoos believe implicity in predeftination, and in the 
tranfmigration of the foul. The firft, though it may operate in 
cramping the genius and obftructing it's progreflive powers, has a 
happy tendency in afiuaging their misfortunes, and adminiftering 
a comfort in all the wants of life. They fay, it is the hand of 
God, which for fome infcrutablc purpofe, directs and impels the 
a&ions of his creatures. The doctrine of Metempfychofis reftrain9 
them from the ufe of animal food,* an aliment not mceflary in a 
hot climate, and often attended with pernicious confequences. 
This reftriction may alfo have contributed to infufe into their minds 
an abhorrence of fanguinary ads, and inculcate the virtues of hu- 
manity and general philanthropy. 

The Hindoos compute their grand evolutions of time by 
epochs, called in their language Jogues, of which there are four, 
correfponding, in the afcribed qualities, with their golden, filver, 
brazen, and iron ages of the ancients. The prefent, they fay, is 
the KhuHee,^ or the fourth Jogue j and that at the expiration of 
every age, the Supreme Being has deftroyed the world, and that a 

• This tenet is not, at this day, ftri&ly adhered to j for the Hindoos of the fecond *■ 
and fourth caft occafionally ufc flefh meat, and the Bramins of Bengal invariably eat fifh. 
The Chriftian X.n, 1787, correfponds with 4888, of the Khulle Taque. 


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continued fuccefilon of Jogues will revolve ad infinitum. The re- 
cords of this ancient people teem fo profufdy with fable, and 
abound throughout in fuch extravagant relations of their demi- 
gods, fimilar in their feafts to the Bacchus, Hercules, and Thefeus 
of the Greeks, that no rational or fatisfa&ory conclufion can be 
drawn, for any adjuftment of chronology. A pundit will intro- 
duce into his legend a lack of years,* with as much facility, and 
perhaps convidion to himfelf, as our commentators of theological 
hiftory would reduce to their ftandard, half a century. 

The principles of the Hindoo religion, with its moft eflential 
tenets, were compofed, it is aflerted, by Brimha, and comprifed 
in four books, entitled the Bairds or Vaids ; a word in the Sanfcrit 
language fignifying myftcry. In that part of the peninfula of In- 
dia bordering on the Coromandel fide, thefe facred writings are 
named the Vaidums. The Talinghahs and Malabars make little 
diftinclion between the letters B, and V, and invariably terminate 
with an M, all Sanfcrit words. The Shaftre is a voluminious com- 
mentary on the Bairds, and has been written by various pundits, 
for the purpofe of illustrating the Hindoo Mythology. From the 
Shaltre proceed thofe prepofterous ceremonies, which have been 
dragged into the Hindoo fyftem of worfhip } all tending to (hackle 
the vulgar mind, and produce in it a flaviih reverence for the tribe 
of Bramins. The privelege of reading the Bairds, and expounding 

* An hundred thoulhnd. 

Vol. L F its 


its texts, is only allowed to them } and prohibited to the other 
cafts, under fevere penalties. By the fole inveftment of this im- 
portant authority, the prieft is left at liberty to explain the original 
do&rine in the manner that may moft forcibly confolidate the 
power and promote the intemft of his order. In the tranfmigra- 
tion Of the foul into different bodies, confifts the various grada- 
tions of reward and pumfhment amongft the Hindoos. Conform- 
ably to their actions, they are tranfpofed into fuch bodies, whether 
of the human or brute fpecies, as their conduct, whilft they occu- 
pied their former tenements, may have merited. They do not ad- 
mit of eternal punimments, and (hudder at the idea of a belief lb 
difconfonant to the opinion which they have formed of the Supreme 

Evil depositions, they fay, are chaftifed by a confinement in 
the bodies of thofe animals, whom they moft refemblc irv their na- 
ture, and are conftrained to occupy them, till their vices are either 
eradicated, or furficiently qualified to defcrve the pofieffioh of fupe- 
rior forms. The good actions of man, the Hindoo law-giver has 
written , will be rewarded by his admiffion into thofe bodies which 
enjoy the utmoft human happineis j as that which the magistrate 
feels on the juft and merciful execution of the truft which has 
been committed to him ; or that high fenfc of pleafure which the 
man of humanity participates, when he has alleviated the diftrefles 
of the unfortunate, or otherwife promoted the welfare of mankind. 
— After a certain feries of transmigration rendered acceptable to 


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the Deity by a purfuit of virtue, and when his foul (hall be com. 
pletely purified from the taints of evil, the Hindoo is admitted to 
a participation of the radiant and never-ceafing glory of his firft 
caufe.* The foul's receiving this act of blifs, is defcribed by com- 
paring it to a ray of light, attracted by the grand powers of the 
fan, to which it (hoots with an iramenfe velocity, and is there ab- 
forbed in the blaze of fplendor. 

Yum Durm Rajah officiates in the fame capacity amongft the 
Hindoos, as Minos did in the infernal regions of the ancients. 
All fouls liberated from the body, are fuppofcd to appear at the 
tribunal of Yum Durm, where their former actions are proclaimed 
aloud, and examined by this judge, who panes an immediate fen- 
tence. Should the difpofition of a man, have been fo flagitioufly 
depraved, as to be judged unworthy, even of an introduction into 
the body of the vileft animal, fuch cop oral punimment is im« 
po'fed on him, as may be thought adequate to his crimes ; and the 
Ibul is afterwards placed in fome fuitablc ftation on earth. Accor- 
ding to the religious tradition of the Hindoos. Sree Mun Narraih, 
fince the creation of the world, nas at nine difFcrent periods af- 
fomed incarnated forms, either for the purpofe of eradicating fome 

terreftrial evflj or chaftifing the fins of mankind.f The Hin- 

*/ '..:.]•. : , ' • »T* 

• The union of the human foul with theoirme ctherial fubftance of the univerfe, 
it the ancient doarine of Pythagoras and Plato j but it feems to exclude any pcrfonal 
or confcious immortality. See Gibbon's Hiftory, volume 4th, p. 202, in a note. 

t According to the Hindoo tradition, a tenth incarnation of th« Deity is yet 

F 2 doos 



doos worfhip a fecondary fpecies of deity, which they wildly multi- 
ply to the number of thirty-three crores,* who in their different 
functions, are defigned to reprefent the numberlefs attributes of 
the Supreme Deity. 

From the crowd of images which the B ram in has placed in 
the temples of the Hindoos, they have been branded with the ap- 
pellation of idolaters. When this mode of offering ^applications 
or thanfgiving to the Supreme Being is difpaffionately examined, it 
will be feen, that a perfonification of the attributes of the Deity is 
not unfitly adapted to the general comprehenfion» Thofe (and they 
compofc a great portion of the people) who are not endowed with 
the ability of reading the praife of God, can with facility conceive 
a certain idea of his grcamefs, in contemplating a figure, fculp- 
turcd with many heads and with many hands, adorned with every 
jjymbol of human power, and beheld by all clafles of men with un- 
feigned reverence. The origin of emblematical figures has long 
preceded the ufe of letters. We find in the Spantfh records, that 
intelligence of the firft arrival of the Europeans on the coaft of 
Mexico, was defcribed to Montezuma by figures painted on cotton 
cloth. In a rude fociety, it was evidently a more eafy operation to 
convey an idea through the medium of a figure cut in wood or 
moulded in clay, than to invent an alphabet, and out of it compofe 
a regulated aflemblage of words, neceffary for the formation of a 
written language. 

• A wore is a hundred lacks. 


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The immenfe group of Hindoo gods enjoy immortality, with 
which they are gifted by drinking a water called Amrut, a mytho- 
logical beverage, bearing fome analogy to the ne£lar of Homer's 
Deities. In the mythology of the Hindoos is found an elegant 
defcription of nine goddeffes, refembling, in a certain degree, the 
mufes of the ancients, in the nature of their occupations. There 
is alfo moft piclurefquely delineated, the god of love, who has a 
variety of epithets, all fignificant of the unbounded fway which he 
pofienes over the hearts of men. His common names are Kaum 
and Mudden, and he is reprefentcd as a pleafing youth, armed 
with a bow of fugar cane, ftrung with the (lings of bees ; and five 
arrows, denoting the five fenfes, each of which is baited with dif- 
ferent qualities of the poifon of love. A picture was found at 
Tanjore, when the fort was captured* riding on a elephant, 
whofe form was compofed of the figures of feven young women, 
entwined together in fo ingenious and whimfical a manner, as 
to exhibit an exaft (hape of that bulky animal. In the Befsf 
EUhwer Pagoda at Benares, is feen a (lone figure, well executed* 
of the god of the fun fitting in a chariot, and driving a horfe 
with twelve heads, an evident allufion to the divifions of the 

• It is alio did to represent Kifbin, an incarnated form of the Deity. 

f An abreviated compound of Vyftnow, or Bilhcn and EiQiwer. In this temple , 
which is dedicated to thefe two Deities in conjunction, the fcftaries of both offer up 
their prayers. 



Without putting etymology to the torture* or moulding to 
the fliape of his fyftem the deceitful aids of chronology, the care- 
ful obfcrver might be enabled to trace fome parts of the religious 
worfhip of the Hindoos into Egypt. He would difcover the facred 
■Bull or Cow of Sheva, placed high in the holy legends of the Coptis ; 
and he would fee the fnakc, one of the myfterious aflbciates of Sree 
Mun Narrain, devoutly revered by that nation, as the hieroglyphic 
of wifdom and longevity. It would appear that the onion, men- 
tioned by hillorians to be held in fuch profound veneration amongft 
the Egyptians, is no lefs marked with reverence in Hindoftan ; 
where, though the ufe of a vegetable diet is ftrongly inculcated, 
and with not a very large deviation, ufualry adopted, the onion is 
forbidden to many of the feels ; and in the upper part of India, 
when an oath, on which a matter of importance depends, is ad- 
ministered, the Bramin frequently introduces the onion, to render 
the ceremony more facred. 

In comparing the religious worship of the Hindoos with that 
of the ancients, the functions of fome of the Deities appear con- 
fpicuoufly uniform ; and were it pofiible to procure a defcription 
of the occupations and various powers of the Hindoo fubaltern 
gods, it might be found, that the group of the weftern pantheon 
had been felecled from the divine afiembly of Brimha. The 
Egyptians and the Greeks, in their commerce with India, through 
the channel of the Red Sea, have left, I have been fometimes in- 
duced to believe, tokens behind them of their connection with the 


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Hindoos, In the collection of a gentleman at Benares are feveral 
valuable antiques, which were purchafed by the merchants of that 
city : one of which, reprefenting a matron, is cut in a manner 
bearing every mark of Grecian fkill ; and another exhibited Cleo- 
patra in the act of being bitten by the afp. The fame gentleman 
had in his poflellion a Medufa's head, on an enteral l, found alfo 
at Benares, which being fent to England, was unrefervedly ac- 
knowledged to be the work of a Grecian or Roman mafter. Some 
years ago, a high finifhed Camaieu was procured at Guzeraf, 
whereon Hercules flaying the Nemean lion, was executed with 
much rafte and fpirit. Thefe circumftanccs are adduced to fnp- 
poit a conjecture, that, during the intercourfe which cxifted be- 
tween the natives of Egypt and India, the former might have in- 
troduced into their country, with fome of the rare and luxurious 
products of Hindooftan, certain tenets and ceremonies of Hindoo 
mythology. In endeavouring to point out the track of thefe an- 
tiques, it is to be noticed, thar they might have found a way into 
India in the cabinets of the Mahometans, who in the more early 
period of their empire, were little lefs enthufiaftic in the admira- 
tion of Grecian productions and literature, than the Romans. 
And it is a fact in need of no illuftration, that the revival of 
letters and the arts, after the Roman world had been immcrfed 
ittrCothic ruin, received a powerful aid from the princes of the 

Mv knowledge of aftronomy is fo confined, that I am almofl: 



incapacitated from describing the attainment of the Bramins in 
tliat fciencc, long before the sera in which it flourifhed in the 
eaftern world. The zodiac, with its twelve figns, is well known 
to the Hindoos, and they have beftowed on the feven days of the 
week, which commences with funday, the names of the planets. 
The folar year* of the Hindoos, which is arranged in fix feafons, 
confifts of twelve months, containing three hundred and fixty-five 
days ; and once in the term of four years an additional day is an- 
nexed for the completion of the earth's precife revolutions round 
the fun. Commercial tranfaclions and writings of correfpondence 
are dated amongft the Hindoos according to the lunar, or Lumbut 
year, which commences about the period of the vernal equinox. 
The month is calculated from the full moon, and is divided into 
thirty equal parts. Thofc comprehending the moon's encreafe; 
are termed Bood, and the portion of its wane, Bole, or Bood. 
On the third year of the Lumbut, an extraordinary month is al- 
tercalated, for the inclufion of the time required in equalizing the 
lunar and folar fyftems. The Joaguels are divided into cycles of 
twelve and fixty years, each of which is diftinguiflied by its pecu- 

• The folar, or at it is denominated by the Hindoos, the Lunkrant year, begins on 
the loth or nth of April, and its months are compofed occaGonally of 29, 30, 31, and 
32 days. The common epochs of Hindooftan was eftablifhed by the Rajah Vickcrum 
Mhaject, and founded 57 years before the year of Chrift. Some Hindoo natioas com- 
pute their time from other periods, as in Bengal ; but their hiftorical writings are 
generally adapted to the year of Vickerum Mhajeft; who was much celebrated in 
Hindoofhn, for his magnificence, and liberal protection of men of genius. 


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liar denomination.* The obfervatory at Benares, though rude in 
its ftruc"ture, and containing inftruments fuitably coarfc, proves 
notwithftanding, that the Hindoos poflefs the knowledge of afcer- 
taining the motions of the heavenly bodies. Could accefs be ob- 
tained to fuch records of the Hindoos as are diverted of that re- 
dundancy of fable with which their priefts have fo copioufly inter- 
woven them, it would not be prefumptuous to fuppofe, that we 
would difcover they had been, in the more early ages of the world, 
one of the moft enlightened and powerful nations that inhabited 
the earth. 

The empire of the Hindoos, as related in many of their hif- 
torical tra&s, confifted of fifty-fix feparate principalities, ulti- 
mately governed by one prince, whofe kingdom extended from the 
fouthern limits of Tartary to the ifland of Ceylon, and from the 
confines of Aflam and Arracan to the river Indus. This cxtenfive 
fpace was inhabited by a people who were divided into four dif- 
tinc"V. tribes, each exercifing different functions, but all uniting in 
their various branches to promote the general good. It abounded 
in fair and opulent cities, which, were decorated with magnificent 

• The Hindoos, I believe, commonly clafs their time in cycles of fixty years, though 
that of twelve is alfo well known to them. Amongft fome articles of plunder, cap- 
tured by the Company's troops in a Banian Fort, was found, with other objc&s of the 
Hindoo worfhip, an image of the Mhah Deve, and a printed reprefentation of the figures 
defcribing the Tartar cycle, which is compofed of 1 2 years. This figurative mode of 
marking time, which has prevailed from high antiquity in Japan, China, Siam, and 
through the vaft regions of Tartary, is at this day obferved in the Turkilh Empire. 

Vol. I. G temples 


temples for the worfhip of the gods ; and with fumptuous man- 
fions, gardens, and fountains, for the pleafure and the accommo- 
dation of the inhabitants. Ufeful and elegant artifans, nulled in 
railing ftupendous buildings, in fabricating gold, (ilver, and the 
raoft delicate cotton cloths, and in the curious workmanfliip of 
precious ftones and metals, all found encouragement in the excr- 
cife of their profeilions.* Salutary ordinances directed the Hin- 
doos in the punifhment of crimes and the fecurity of property ; 
&nd when fome glaring indulgencies in favour of the facred tribe 
are excepted, we muft yield an unrefcrved approbation to the jus- 
tice and wifdom of their laws. The traveller was enabled to jour- 
ney through this extcniive empire, with an eafe and fafety, un- 
known ia other countries. The public roads were fhadcd with 
trees $ and frequent habitations, accommodated with a pond or 
well, were founde4 for the conveniency of the paffenger; and 
Aiould lie have been pillaged in any part of the country, the diftrift 
in which the damage had been fuftained, was obliged to make 
reuitution — When this empire, its polifhed people, and the pro- 
grefs which fcience had made amongft them, are attentively confi- 
dered ; when, at the fame period, a retrofpeclive view is thrown on 

• - ' • * " * 

* This dcfcription may be judged chimerical and extravagant by thofe who have 
hot witnefled the conftru&ion of the ancient Hindoo monuments, or examined the hif- 
tory of their empire when it firft belonged to the Mahometans. Thcfc foldiers arc re- 
prefented to have been fafcinated by the difplay of its grandeur, and to have fto d 
amazed at the treafures that were difdofed. Vide Dow's Relation of the Plunder of 
the Samoaut Temple. 


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the ftates of the European world, then immerfed in, or emerging 
from, ignorance and barbarity, we muft behold Hindoftan with 
wonder and refpect i and we may afiert without forfeiting the 
claims of truth and moderation, that however far the European 
world now out-ftrips the nations of the Haft, the followers of 
Jkimha in the early periods of life, were poflefled of a fund amply 
ftored with valuable materials of philofophy and ufcful knowledge. 
The humane mjnd will naturally feel a fenfe of forrow and pity 
for a people, who have fallen from fo confpicuous a height of glory 
and fortune, and who probably have contributed to polifti and exalt 
die nations, who now hold them in fubjeclion. 

To form an accurate judgment of the genius of the Hindoos, 
or to defcribe the limit to which they extended art and fcience, it 
were requifite, could the neceffary materials be procured, to exhibit; 
the condition of their empire, before it had felt the fevere and vic- 
torious arms of the Mahometans. — A partial and degrading rela- 
tion would be. made of the Hindoos, were a defcription of their 
laws, government, and manner, taken from the appearance they 
make at this day in the eye of the world. Hindoftan was over- 
thrown by a fierce race of men, who in their rapid courfe of con- 
queft, exerted the moft furious efforts in levelling every monument 
of worfhip and tafte. They maffacred the priefts and plundered 
the temples, with a keennefs and ferocity, in which their firft 
chiefs might have gloried. A people thus crufhed, groaning un- 
der the load of oppieflion, and difmayed at the fight of incefTant 

G 2 cruelties, 


cruelties, muft foon have loft the fpirit of fciencc, and the exertion 
of genius : efpecially as the fine arts were fo blended with their 
fyftcra of religion, that the perfecution of the one, muft have fhed 
a baneful influence on the exiftence of the other. To decide on, 
or affix, the character of the Hindoo, from the point of view in 
which lie is now beheld, would, in a large degree, be fimilar to 
the attempt of conveying an exact idea of ancient Greece, from the 
materials now prefented by that wretched country. The difquifi- 
tion of the man of philanthrophy, liberated from the fcttei s of 
prejudice, will be far different : — he will enjoy congenial plealure, 
in difpelling the made of obfeurity, which hath long enveloped the 
hrftory of the Hindoo : — he will endeavour to carry it back to that 
aera of grandeur, which his country enjoyed in her day of profpe- 
rity, and there hold him out to the information of mankind the ge- 
nerality of whom, whether from motives of contempt, or habits of 
indolence, have yet acquired but a trivial and incorrect knowledge 
of this ancient people. It will then be feen, that the genius of 
the Hindoos was happily led on j and that their bent of difpofition 
was aptly regulated and attempered by the rules eftablifhed for the 
performance of their feveral profeflions. A precifion which re- 
pelled the encroachments of error or defign, prefcribed to them 
their refpettive duties in the ftate, and in fociety, and wholly pre- 
cluded any other fed from infringing on the privileges of another. 
The Bramin was invefted with the uncontrolled guardianlhip of 
religion j he became the perpetual medium, through which the in- 

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ferior claflfcs addreffed their god : he was alfo the fole depofitary 
and inftruttor of fcience, and to his care and ability was intrufted 
the education of youth. The importance of thefe offices muft 
have given to the Bramin great fway in a community where a 
knowledge of religious worihip, from its complex variety, be- 
comes a talk of arduous labour; and where, at the fame time, a 
performance of the lites of his religion, is deemed an obligation 
indifpenlably incumbent on the Hindoo, in his acquifttion of fu- 
ture haupinefs. Thefe employments were judged of fufficient mag- 
nitude to occupy the whole attention of the Bramin, and he was 
ftrictly interdicted from all temporal affairs. The authority of ex- 
crcifing the functions of royalty, feems to have devolved without 
referve on the Chittery or Rajah, and his poffeffions were held here- 
ditary in the line of legitimate male primogeniture. The youngeft 
branch of this race were employed in the army, and entrufted 
with the charge of the forts and ftrong holds of the country. 
The occupation of a merchant, with the tran factions of traffic, 
was committed to the Bhyfc, or Banian, and it was declared 
unlawful for the other tribes to engage in commerce. The huf- 
bandraan, the artifan, the private foldier, and the labourer, 
compofe the Looder, or the fourth caft of Hindoo ; and each of 


thefe refpeclive profeflions was exclufively purfued. Thus, dis- 
tinctly arranged, and on the fevereft penalties prohibited from ex- 
traneous mixture, or the admiflion of profelytes, the Hindoo go- 


vemraent acquired an uniformity and vigour, the natural refult 
of its principles.* 

Were an analogy afcertained between the mythology of the 
Hindoos and Egyptians, perceptible traces of which are occafion- 
ally prefented, it might then become a matter of doubt which peo- 
ple, for the greateft fpace of time have been the mart poliihed and 
enlightened. From the examples which have been brought for- 
ward for the explanation of fomc of the moft conipicuous parts of 
the mythology of the Hindoos, and to demonftratc the probable 
antiquity of that nation, it may feem, that I favour the belief of 
Egypt's having received a portion of her Hock of fcience and reli- 
gion from India. With a deference to popular opinion, and dis- 
claiming all fabrication of fyftem, I mult avow an inclination to 
this opinion. One fa& amongft fome others, afforded me a fair 
proof of the high antiquity of the Hindoos, as a civilized nation, 
and marks a ftrong difapprobation of a foreign intercourfe. 

They are forbidden to crofs the river Attoc, the name of 
which, in certain dialects of their language, fignifies prohibition j 
and fliould they pafs this boundary, they are held unclean, and in 

* Many of the fences that marked the limits of the refpedtive tribes, are now 
broken down. The Bramins of the Dccan and Punjal, have taken up the fword, 
and are feen crowding the ranks of an army ; the Chittery occafionally takes himfelf 
to traffic, and the Sooder has become the inheritor of principalities. Mararow, the 
.gallant Mahrattah officer and chief of Ghooty, was of the fourth call of Hindoos. 


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the friicl: fenfe of religious law, forfeit their rank in the tribes they 
may be claflld in. They were alfo, either forbidden from embark- 
ing on the ocean, or they were deterred fiom undertaking marine 
expeditions, by the difficulties incurred in procuring at fea, the 
requifite diet for a Hindoo. The probability therefore is not ap- 
parent, that any part of a people, fenced in by this reftri&ion, 
and who were fo proudly centered in themlelves, as to reject with 
abhorrence, the admiflion of profelyes, would have emigrated into 
a diftant country, and brought from thence a fyftem of religious 
worfhip j nor docs any probable tradition authorife the belief of 
an Egyptian colony having been cftablifhed in India. The capa- 
cious Ipace which Hindoftan occupies on the face of the globe, 
the advantages it derives from foil and climate, and from its nu- 
merous rivers, fome of them of the firft clafs of magnitude, may 
be adduced as reafonablc arguments of its having been peopled at 
a more early period of time than Egypt, which does not poffefs 
the like local benefits. If the degree of perfection which manu- 
factures have attained, be received as a criterion to judge of the 
progrefs of civilization, and if it be alfo admitted as a teft of decid- 
ing on the antiquity of a people, who adopt no foreign improve- 
ments, little hefitation would occur, in bellowing the palm of pre- 
cedence on Hindoftan, whofe fabrics of the moft delicate and beau- 
tiful contexture, have been long held in admiration, and have hi- 
therto ftood umivalled. Let me conclude this comparative view, 
with obferving, and I trult difpaflionately, that when we fee a 



people pofTefled of an ample ftock of fcience of well digefted ordi- 
nances, for the protc&ion and improvement of fociety — and of a 
religion whofe tenets confill of the utmoft refinement, and variety 
of ceremony — and, at the fame time, obferve amongft other Afi- 
atic nations, and the Egyptians of former times, but partial dis- 
tributions of knowledge, law, and religion — we muft be led to 
entertain a fuppoiition, that the proprietors of the leflcr, have 
been fupplied from the fources of the greater fund. Thefe re- 
flections which have been furnifhed by experience and various in- 
formation, will perhaps afford more Satisfaction, than the laboured 
and perplexed proofs of dates and etymology, which are often 
framed, as they mod commodioufly accord with fomc favourite 

Amongst the Hindoos, marriage* when it can be performed 
with any degree of conveniency, is deemed an indifpenfable duty, 
and it is believed, that propagating the fpecies in that ftate, enti- 
tles parents to Angular marks of the divine favour. They fhew 
a disapprobation of celibacy by many marks of opprobtum and 
fcorn ; and I have frequently obferved, that when a Hindoo, from 
queftion, or other caufes, has been brought to the affirmation of 

• This word, ufed in the Sanfcrit language, is often termed Callian, which figni- 
fics pleafure. The Hindoos, in common ufage, have but one wife, and when this rule 
is deviated from, it is confidered a fpecies of indecency. There is a fet, though not 
numerous, of mendicants, called Joguees, or Byraghces, who live in a ftate of ce- 


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his fingle ftate, he has appeared difconcerted and amamcd, and im- 
mediately attributed his folitary condition to ill fortune, or fomc 
domeftic inconveniency. It is to this inftitution, which is ftrongly 
recommended, and, I may fay, even enforced, that the generally 
extenfive population of Hindoftan, and its fpeedy recovery from 
the calamities of war and famine, may be largely afcribcd. The 
entire fyftem of domeftic ordinance and ceconomy of the Hindoos, 
is founded on a firm, yet, fimple bafis ; from which arife effects, 
happy in themfclves, and powerfully operative in uniting the bonds 
of fociety. By the ancient laws of the country, the wife depends 
for the enjoyment of every pleafure, as well as for moft of the or- 
dinary accommodations of life, on the immediate exiftence of her 
hufband j and it becomes her invariable intereft to preferve his 
health, as much of her happinefs is centered in his living to an old 
age. On the demife of the hufband, the wife virtually devolves 
into a caput mortuum j ftie is not permitted to marry again, /he 
is deprived of all confequence in the family, and diverted of the 
marks of ornament and diftinc~lion. There are certain reli- 
gious ceremonies not lawful for her to perform, and in fome in- 
ftances, fhe is held unclean ; but on all occafions, after the huf- 
band's death, the widow is clafled in the houfe as a flave or a me*, 
nial fervant. But this ufagc has not fo generally prevailed in latter 
times. The wives of the deccafed Hindoos have moderated that 
fpirit of enthufiaftic pride, or impulfc of afFection, which was ufed 
to urge them to felf-deftruclion on the pile of their hufbandf. 
Vol. I. II Their 


Their grief can now be aflfuaged, and their religious duties recon- 
ciled, by a participation of domeftic comforts j and many of the 
Hindoo widows, efpecially in the Maihattah country, have ac- 
quired by their ability, their wealth, connection, or intrigue, the 
poflefllon of extenfive power and influence. Amongft the fuperior 
tribes of the Hindoos, where the fenfe of honor or fhame, is more 
delicately preferved, rather than fuffer a degradation, by which fe- 
male attractions are extinguiflied, and the pride and fpirit of the 
fex depreffed, the women are impelled by a furious courage, foftened 
by the term of matrimonial affection, to terminate the mifery of 
their condition in death. According to a paflage of the Shafter of 
the Hindoos, which I examined by the help of an interpreter, it i$ 
fpecifically ordained, that a wife ought to burn herfelf at her huf- 
band's death ; mould (he not poflefs the rcfolution of fuftaining 
this trial, (he is directed to make a pilgrimage to fome of the facred 
places of Hindoo ablution, as Benares, Allahabad, Ghyah, &c. 
and there, appropriating her property to charitable ufes, offer up 
a facrifice of her hair to the memory of her hulband. She is not 
to decorate her perfon with jewels, with gold, filver, or any female 
ornament : Ihc is not to ufe perfumes, nor eat flefti, fifti, or butter ; 
but to live on plain barley or wheaten bread, and eat but once in a 
day. Her time is to be employed in the conftant worihip of God, 
and the purification of her mind, from anger, malice, and avarice ; 
and lhe is to withdraw herfelf from all the concerns of the world. 
If her life is palled in thefe acts (he is promifed after death to enter 

. heaven, 

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heaven, without foffering intermediate purgation, in addition to 
the dread -of fo degraded a ftate of mortification, the widow on the 
other fide is told by the Bramins, that the performance of the a& 
of fetf-deftruclion will entitle her to an ample participation of ex- 
quifite future joys, and will enfurc to her progeny the pre-eminent 
favor of the Deity. Though the iflue of fuch a refolution forcibly 
affects thofe feelings of humanity cheriflied amongft European na- 
tions, yet as the ufoge appears to originate in a caufe tending to 
ftrengthen domeftic policy, it ought not to be haftily condemned, 
or imputed altogether to the dictates of cruelty or injuftice. 

Conformably to the ftate of fubordination in which Hindoo 
women are placed, it has been judged expedient to debar them the 
ufe of letters. The Hindoos hold the invariable language, that 
acquired accomplishments are not neccflary to the domeftic clafies 
of the female fex, whether for contributing to her individual hap- 
pinefs, or preferving the decorum of character, and fimplicity of 
manners r which alone render her ufeful or amiable, in the eftima- 
tion of her family. They urge that a knowledge of literature 
would conduce to draw a woman from her houfehold cares, and 
give a difrelifh to thofe offices, in which confift the only fatisfaction 
and amufemcnt that file can, with propriety, and an obfervance of 
rectitude, partake of ; and fuch is the force of cuftom, that a Hin- 
doo woman would incur a feverc reproach, were it known that flic 
could read or write. The Hindoo dancing girls, whofe occupations 
are avowedly devoted to the public plcaiure, are, on the contrary 

II 2 taught 



taught the ufe of letters, and are minutely inftructed in the know- 
ledge of every attraction and blandiftiment, which can operate in 
communicating the fenfual pleafure of love. Thefe women arc 
not obliged to feek ihelter in private haunts, nor are they, on ac- 
count of their profeflional conduct, marked with opprobrious 
ftigma. They compofe a particular clafs of fociety, and enjoy the 
avowed protection of government, for which they are aflefled ac- 
cording to their feveral capacities. No religious ceremony or fef- 
tival is thought to be completely performed, with, the accompany- 
ment of dancing women. They ufually attend on a certain day of 
the week, at the court of the prince or governor of the diftritt, ei- 
ther to make an obeifance, or exhibit a profeflional entertainment; 
and in fome of the provinces, they are endowed with grants of the 
public lands.* 

An Hindoo family is governed with efficient power by the 
male fenior member, to whom the other branches mew an atten- 
tive refpect, and in domeftic life a ready fubmiflion. A fon will 
not fit in the prefence of his father without exprefs defire, and in 
his deportment and converfation, obferves to him a dutiful, as well 

• The Hindoo dancing-women are here only alluded to, and thofe particularly who 
aflift which is a numerous cUfs) at the ceremonies of worfhip. As they receive a 
maintenance from the revenue of the pagoda, or from private pcribns, they arc not dri- 
ven by neceffity into a promifcuous intcrcourfe with the world. But it is to be obfer- 
ved, that thofe who do not receive any permamrnt ftipend, are little left diflblute and 
abandoned in their habits of life, than a female of fimilar defcription in European 

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as affe&ionate, behaviour. In the courfe of a long refidence in In- 
dia, and rather a dole inveftigation of Hindoo cuitoms and man- 
ners, I never difcovered what our language has termed a free think- 
er.* The mod celebrated characters amongft the Hindoos, and 
their men of the world, as Scindia, Nanah Purnawees,-f- and the 
Bhohulla, believe the tenets of the doctrine of Brimha with as 
much fincerity, and practice the minuteft ceremony with as much 
fcrupulous attention, as the fimpleft or mod bigotted peafant in 
the country. 

I am, Dear Sir, 

Yours, 6cc. &c. 

• There are Tome fchifmatic fefls found amongft the Hindoos, and even chuTes of 
that people, who reject the authority of the Baids, and the whole conftru&ion of Bra- 
min mythology ; but however pure the original mode of their worfhip might have 
been, it is now grofsly entangled with ceremony and emblem. The mod confiderablc 
branch of thefe fe£iaries is denominated Pooje ; who have beftowed on the objedt of 
their adoration, the title Paurufs Naut, which in the Sanfcrit may be termed the lord of 
the alchymicat philosopher's (tone. 

f Mharattah chiefs of eminence. 




Benares > 30M November 1782. 


O N the 3d of this month, I made an ex- 
curfion to Bidgi-ghur,* a place rendered famous in the Bengal an- 
nals, from a large amount of plunder acquired there by the Eng- 
lifh troops. On the firft day, I arrived at Lutteef-ghur, about 18 
miles to the fouthweft of Bejfnares. The fort was entirely deferted, 
and the paflage approaching to it is almoft choaked up by brufh- 
wood, and the projected branches of trees. Lutteef-ghur frands 
in the centre of a circular range of hills, from the furamit of 
which, a thick, and in molt places a high wood, reaches to the 
walls of the fort. The air of this fpot being deprived of a quick 
circulation, has acquired a malignant quality, and [communicates 
its pernicious influence to all animal Bodies. It is in thefe fixa- 
tions, where as it is termed, the hill fever is produced : — a difeafe, 
which pervading every part of the animal ceconomy, contaminates 

• Bidgi and Idgi, according to the mythology of the Hindoos, keep watch at the 
gate of Paradife \ Ghur, in the Hindoo, is i fortrefs or ftrong hold. 


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the whole mafs of blood, and will only yield to the power of mer- 
cury. The water alfo in fuch places partakes of the like baneful 
property : — it mould feem that the air infuies into this element, a 
certain portion of that peftiferous quality, with which the climate 
of woody and confined countries in India is ever pregnant. The 
falling of the b.anches and leaves into rivulets and refervoirs 
of water, may likewife increafe the noxious effect. Having fre- 
quently witneffed the ill effects of a confined air, I am the more 
emboldened to hazard thefe conjectures ; which I will clofe with 
noticing to you, that wherever I have obferved an impurity of air 
the water has been equally pernicious. 

At the gate of the fort, had taken up his lonely refidence, a 
Mahometan Faquir, who bore on him, poor man! evident proofs 
of the deftru&ive climate of Luttcef-ghur ; — he was meagre, wan, 
and nearly conlumed by the violence of a fever and ague. When I 
defired him to leave io melancholy a ftation, and go where he might 
recover his health, he fhewed little attention to the advice, and 
prefeted, he faid, an exiftence in this place, under a load of mifery 
and the precarious charity of paflengers, to the rifk of ftarving in 
places where he might be wholly unknown. 

On the 4th, after a Journey of about twenty miles, I arrived 
near the foot of Bidgi-ghur hill, where I flept, and in the morning 
walked up to the fort, which is a circumvallation of the crown of 
a rocky hill, meafuring from the immediate buie to the fummit, a 
little more perhaps than two miles. 



The artificial fortification is neither ftrong, nor is it compofed 
of fubftantial materials, as is feen by a fiflure of the wall, caufed 
by the rains of the laft year, and alfo by a breach that was made 
during the fiege ; which fhew that the wall is chiefly compofed of 
rough ftones cemented with clay. This ftrong hold owes its im- 
portance folely to its height and fteepnefs ; and had it been de- 
fended with a common (hare of conduct and fpirir, the capture 
would have been attended with much difficulty and bloodfhed. It 
has been faid indeed, that exclufively of the hazardous attempt of 
taking Bidgi-ghur by ftorm, the greater part of the troops would 
have been deftroyed by fevers, had they remained in that quarter a 
month longer. Three deep refervoirs, excavated on the top of the 
hill, plentifully fupply the garrifon with water. Some of the 
baftions on the eaftern fide are fupported by branches of the rock, 
which projecting horizontally eight or ten feet from the fummit, 
holds out in the air a folid foundation. The profpedr. around is 
diverfified and piclurefque, but when you throw the eye on the deep 
and rugged precipice beneath, the view is infinitely grand, though 
not diverted of that horror, which naturally affects the mind in 
contemplating objects from fo abrupt a height. The rifing and 
fetting fun at Bidgi-ghur exhibits a magnificent fcene, and excites 
a train of ideas ftrongly imprefled with a grateful admiration of 
the firft caufe of nature. The view of the fetting fun takes in the 
river Soane, which is feen winding its ftream, brightened by the 
rays of the weftern light, through a long tract of diverfified coun- 

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try.— A fort alio appears on the fide of a diftant hill, which is 
onljr brought into the evening profpect. 

The village of Mow, fituate at the bottom of the defcent, 
which before the capture of Bidgi-ghur was well peopled, and 
poflefied a confiderable commerce, is now deferted and in ruins. 
This .village, whofe lofs is feverely felt in many parts of the coun- 
try, afforded the only mart on that quarter for fupplying the 
wants of the bordering mountaineers, who reforted thither, and 
bartered their wares for the produce of the low lands. Since the 
depopulation of Mow this commercial communication has ceafed, 
and the Benares traders maintain little connection with the inha- 
bitants of the hills, who are a hardy active race of men, and were 
they encouraged like thofe of Bauglepore to enter into our fervicc, 
an ufeful body of foldiers might be acquired. They are not, it 
is faid, fubject to that fpecies of fever incident to a hilly country, 
which has operated fo fatally on the health of our troops j nor 
do they entertain thofe prejudices in their mode of living which 
affect the higher ranks of the Hindoos, and which have been 
found to embarrafs military operations. An introduction alfo of 
a foreign clafs of men into the army, might be conducive by its 
counterpoife, to the enfuring the fidelity of the whole body of 
native troops. 

Bul want Sing, through a channel of .intrigue and direct 
diftionefty, qualities he notorioufly poflefled, fcized on Bidgi-ghur, 
which he ftrengthened and made the principal repofitory of his 
Vol. I I wealth j 


wealth ; and Chcyt Sing ,♦ who augmented the works and 
the treafures, conftrufted a ftrong bridge of ftonc over a fmall 
river that fldrts the bottom of the hill. • * - Hw 


I am, Dear Sir, 

* The Son of Buhrant Sing,, and now a fugitive in the Camp of Seiiufia* 

. LET- 

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• t • 

* /**"* I * 


r ... 

mm 4 

To T. D. F. Allahabad, \-]th Dec. 1782. 


The want of a fubjecl: to inform or amufc 
you, was the only caufe of my not iboner acknowledging your 
long and very kind letter. You may with confidence believe, that 
a fbrgetfulncis of the many offices of friendftup which I have ex- 
perienced at your hands, will never be clafied in the roll of my 
offences, which, God knows, already is too long a one I and truft 
me when I fay, that I hold the connection which has fo long 
fubfiftcd between us, as the chiefeft honor and credit of my life. 

I am now to inibrmyou, that having refolved on proceeding to 
Europe by a northern trad, I affumed the name of a Georgian, for 
the lake of travelling with more iafetv. and left Benares on the 
2 2th of this month, mounted upon a fmall horfe. After a journey 
of four days, -or forty coffes, in which no particular occurrence, 
fell out, I arrived at Allahabad. About mid-way commences the 
territory of Oude, which is immediately cUftingutfhed from that of 
Benares by its barren and defolate afpect. The fortrefs of AUaha- 

I a bad, 


» bad, founded by Acbar,* ftands on the point of land which forma 
the confluence of the Ganges and Jumma } — a fituation beautiful 
as it is commodious } and in the feafon of the year when the flow 
of water is fpacious and rapid, exhibits a fcene of uncommon gran- 
deur. On one fide, the Ganges is feen rolling down a ftrong and 
yellow tide, and on the other, the Jumma glides with a clearer 
ftream clofc to the walls of the fort. To this favorite and facred 
fpot a large affembly of Hindoos refort at an annual period, to 
wafti away their fins, and obtain permiflion to begin a new fcore. 
Thefe pilgrims, who are laid under contributions for participating 
this indulgence, furnifh the yearly fum of about 56,000 rupees i& 
the Vizier's treafury. The fort of Allahabad, wliich is built of 
ftone, occupies a large fpace of ground, and has been amply fup- 
pfied with fuperb and ufcful buildings, whether for promoting the 
pleafures or conveniences of life. The place entitled the Ghahf 
Padlhil* is one of the beft Mahometan niarifions I havi hitherto 
feen ; but the want of fiiitaHe tenants has occafioned great difor- 
ders in it. The infide of its upper room'is conftrdcled of marnle 
of variegated eolddrs, and neatly adjufted. - From 'this apartment; 
the lord of the world, as he is entitled by his fubjefts, hafli a di£ 
tinft view of twelve different foits of female apartments j in the 

front of which, when the monarch iffues the mandate, 1 his beau- 

.{ .*, ?„.*. 1.. •. ■• 1 •, 

• This Emperor commenced his reign is A. D. 1556, and died in 1605. 

i The Imperial Apartment. , r • 

* * 

s, i teous 

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teous handmaids are arranged in his fight that he may felect. the 
favorite of the day. The imperial choice, or rather edict, (to what 
humiliations do the laws of Mahomet fubjeft ye my fair friends ! ) 
is conveyed to the fortunate damfel, and full joyoufly doth her 
heart heat, who on "the day of review attracts the fancy of her 
lord } — for the paffion of vanity is faid oftentimes to fupply in a 
female -breaft the place of love. I fhould not diflike, my friend, 
to be a Padibah myfelf, were it not that many of them have had 
their throats cut by their friends, and been compelled to drink very 
bitter potions finee liable to fueh treatment, much good may 
their fine ladies and other fine things do them ! 

In the palace yard (lands a round pillar of about forty feet 
high, confiding of an entire it one, which coarfely refembles the 
porphyry, and Teems covered with an infeription,, in the ancient 
Hindoo character but the letters are fo much effaced and impair- 
ed by the ravages of time, which, my friend, fpares not even mar- 
ble, that they are become illegible. The erection of this monu- 
ment is attributed to Beemfhyne, whom your firamin will tell you, 
was in his day a powerful chief, and one of the principal warriors 
in the Mhah Bhaut.* But as a devout believer, you muft not 
repofe too much faith on the Bramin's account of the aera in which 
this Beemihyne is faid to have flouriftied ; for he will tell you that 
our great progenitor was not even heard of in thofe days. The 

• The great war which was carried on by the Paunch-paun-Deve, or the compact 
•f the five Brothers, againft Dur-jodin. Sec Wilkin's Gheeta. 



Mahometans, who as furioufly deftroyed every monument and cu- 
rious veftige not exprcflive of their doctrine, as they were acluated 
by a blind zeal in its propagation and fupport, have endeavoured 
to claim the conftru&ion of this pillar, and over the Hindoo re- 
cord, they have engraved the names of many of their emperors, 
fmce the time of Babr * 

This pillar, which bears the mark of great antiquity, dearly 
evinces that Allahabad was a place of importance long before the 
sera of the Mahometan conqueft of India. We mould pafs in- 
deed a contemptuous, not to fay an unjuft cenfure, on the under- 
standing of the ancient Hindoos, did we fuppofe that they had 
overlooked a fituation, at once fo favourable to the performance of 
their religious duties, and fo happily adapted to the enjoyments of 
life. Almoft as many cities have been brought forward by mo- 
dern writers to prefer their claims to the Polybertha of India, as 
of old, contefted for the birth-place of Homer. Monfieur d'An- 
ville, the celebrated French geographer, feems to give the palm to 
Allahabad. Strabo has made mention of a grand caufeway, lead- 
ing from Polybortha into the interior parts of the country, and as 
fuch ftruftures are durable and confpicuous, it is to be fuppofed that 
iome remains of this road would have yet been vifible ; but on a 
careful examination I could not difcover its mod diftant trace. 
A mound of earth appears on the weftern more of the Ganges, 

• The full Emperor of the race of Timur, who fat on the throne of Hindoftan. 



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extending about a mile in a line with the river where it ip» 
proaches the fort, which has been evidently thrown up to prevent 
the ftream in the feafons of the floods, from overflowing or injuring 
the town. 

In touching on the fubjecT: of Allahabad, it is neceflary to no*, 
tke the tomb of Sultan Khufro. This maufoleum, about a mile 

the caftward of the town, ftands io the midft of a fpacious 
garden enclofed with a high wall, and well fupplicd with a variety 
of flower and fruit trees, but from want of culture they look 
rugged and barren. Being clad in the Mahometan habit, and 
intimating a defire to offer up my prayers at the royal fhrine, I 
was immediately admitted. The public edifices of the Mahome- 
tans being coaftru6ted of the worft fpeciea of what is termed the 
Gothic order, they cannot afford much pleafure to the European 
eye, which is How taught to regard only the more Ample and 
chafte proportions of art.* Yet the tomb of Khufro, though 
comprifing few of the rules of architecture, hath in its appear- 
ance fomething peculiarly pleafing, and difiufes around it an air 
of melancholy, congenially Anted to the purpofe of its foun- 
dation. The building is nearly a fquare, raifed from the ground 
by a low flight of ftcps. and has a vaulted roof in the form 
of a dome, whofe outfide is covered with tiles of a fine clay, 
ftained with a diverfity of colours, on which the reflecYion of 

* This opinion does not prefume to include the monuments at Agra, which have 
deferved the warmeft approbation of our celebrated artiita. 



the fun produces a pleafing cfFtcl. No fund being cftablimed 
for fuppoi ting this monument, it cannot long furvive the numerous 
edifices now fcattered in ruins through the environs of Allahabad. 
Adjoining to the tomb of Khufro, is one of a fmailer fize, which 
I a mendicant informed me was erected in commemoration of 
one of the female branches of the imperial family. Some Maho- 
metan priefts who live in the garden, keep the infide of the maufb- 
leum decently clean, and the different appurtenances are (till in 
good prefervation, particularly the wooden bier in which the body 
is faid to be depofited.* Obferving a fmall curtain fpread on the 
wall, I drew it afide, and mult confefs to you that I was imprefled 
with a very fenfible awe, on difcovering the figure of an open hand, 
engraved on black marble : when I adverted to the nature of the 
place, and the ufe to which it had been applied, I at firit fuppofed 
that this reprefentation denoted the hand, or the power of the 
Deity ; but a farther recollection informed me, that Mahomed, Ali, 
Fatima,*f- Huffin, and HufTein, were defcribed by this emblem; 
and that in compliance with the law which excludes all works of 
Sculpture and painting from Mahometan worfhip, it had been 

The Allahabad diftri&s once paid into the royal treafury a re- 

• * 

• Sultan Khufro, the eldeft ton of Tehanquir, died A. D. i6aa. 
t Fatima, the daughter of Mahomed, was married to Ali, and had two Tons, Huffio 
and HufTein* 



ycune of between feventy and eighty lacks of rupees, but fuch is 
the impoveriftied and depopulated ftate of the Vizier's country, 
that it is at this day reduced to a fourth of that amount. Shaiftah 
Khan, who was appointed by Aurungzebe to govern the provinces 
of Bengal and Bahar after the death of Amir Jumlah,* hath left 
many monuments of his liberality in the vicinity of Allahabad. 
On an infulated rock in the Jumna, near the city, and at a fmall 
diftance from the fouth (hore, he built a lofty apartment, which 
is cooled by the refreftiing winds of the river, and commands a dif- 
tant and wildly diverfified view. A Perfian infeription which I 
tranferibed, fays that Mahomed Shirreef, in the year of the Hcgira, 
i°55»"t" finifhed this airy feat of pleafure by order of Shaiftah 
Khan.*— But from great men and their fplendid works, let me de- 
icend to more trivial concerns, and to fome account of my private 
adventures. • - - 

India, you know, hath ever been famed for affording conve • 
nient places of accomodation to the traveller, who at the di(- 
tance of eight and ten miles, feldom fails meeting with a public 
lodging, or a refervoir of water, where he may perform his ablu - 
tions, and quench his thirft. As the greater part of the inhabi • 
tants of India, from a fimplicity of Jife, and the clement ftate of 
their climate, have but few fuperfluous wants* a flight defence 

* • • 

• The officer employed by Aurungzebe to oppofc Sultan 6huj«h. 
t A. D. 1645. 

Vol. I. K againil 



againft the fun and rain, a fmall portion of cloathing, with plain 
' food, conftitute a large (hare of their real ones. In upper India, 
the ceconomy of Karawan Scrah,* or as it is ufually called the 
Serauce, is conducted by better regulations, and its conveniences 
more fenfible felt, than in the fouthern parts of India. An in- 
clofed area, the interior fides of which contain fmall apartments, 
fronting inwards with a principal gate-way, is appropriated in 
every village of note, to the ufe of travellers.-f- The ftationary 
.tenants of the (erauce,| many of them women, and fbme of them 
very pretty, approach the traveller on his entrance, and in al- 
luring language defcribe to him the various excellencies of their 
feveral lodgings. When the choice is made, (which is often per- 
plexing, fo many are the inducements thrown out on all fides of 
)iim) a bed § is laid out for his repofe — a fmoaking pipe is brought, 
and the utenfils cleaned, for preparing his repaft. The necehary 

• Keravanferahis a Perfee and Arabic compound of Kor, fignifying bufinefc, rtwtn 
the participle of the verb rufteen, to go, move, proceed, &c and of firab, an habit a- 
tion. The Tuck tray an, a vehicle ufed by travellers in many parts of Afia, is compofed 
of the words, tmit, a feat, or board, and the aforementioned participle. I have ven- 
tured to infert thefe etymologies for the ufe of thofe who are not converfant in the 
Perfian Language, . 

f Shcre Shah, who drove Humarm from the throne of Delhi, in 1542, is faid to 
have been the fir ft Mahometan who eftabiifhed Karavanfcrahs in India. This fa<£f, 
alio recorded in Daw's hiftory, is well known among ft the natives.— She re Shah hoik 
the fort of Rhotas, and the mausoleum of Safleram. 

X The ferauces at this day are usually given in rent. 

§ This piece of furniture, of very fitapte conftrufiion, has low feet, with the fides 
and ends formed of bamboo or common rough wood, and the bottom of laced cords. 


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fam is delivered into the hands generally of a girl, who procures 
the materials, and dreftes his meal in a mod expeditious m ", n 
For two domeftics and myfelf, the horfe and his keeper, the whole 
of my dayly expenditure amounted to a fum, which as you will 
not credit, I will not venture to note ; and on days when I was in- 
clined to feaft, the addition of two or three pence procured a fump- 
tuous fare, with the accompanyment of a fauce, which an alderman 
over his callipafti might figh for. 

Adieu, my dear Sir, 

I am Your's, &c. &c. 

K 2 




To I. D. F. Lucknow, ift January >, 1783. 


Y laft letter to you written from Allaha- 
bad, contained Tome defcription of that place, with a farrago of 
defultory remarks arifing from the moment, and haftily thrown 
together j but fhould the perufal have given a little amufement or 
information, I will contentedly facrifice any claims to genius or 
method. — The following gives the detail of my journey from Alia- 
habad to Lucknow, and though containing no matter of any 
fubftance, may afford you half an hour's relaxation. 

On the 20th of December, — after attending at the funeral 
ceremony performed in commemoration of Huflin and Hufiein, or 
rather of the latter, I left Aliahabad, and went no farther that day 
than Beghum* Serauce, a ftation of three cofles.f I will curforily 

* Beghum is the feminine gender of Begh, at Khartum it that of Khan, both titles 
•f Tartar extra&ion : the latter has been often adopted by the female branches of the 
imperial family of Timur. 

f Two Britilh miles may be given to the average measurement of a cofs. 


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embrace this occafion of informing you, that Huflin and Huffcin, 
were the fons of Ali, the fon- in-law and nephew of the Arabian 
prophet. During the war which the firft Mahomet maintained 
againft the Infidels, (fo the profeffor of the new faith denominated 
thofe of a different creed), Huflin was poifoned, and Huffein was 
flain in battle. They confequently became martyrs i — and the 
tomb of Huflein, which was erected in the vicinity of Bagdat, is 
held by the Sheahs * in the fame degree of veneration, with that of 
their prophet, by the other Mahometan feclaries. 

On the 2 1 ft, eat my breakfaft and fmoaked my pipe at Tutty- 
pour, or the place of victory. On enquiry why a village fo mean 
and fmail, had been diftinguifhed by fo great a name, I was told, 
that in former times, fome fignal victory had been obtained there j 
but my intelligencer knew nothing of the parties concerned. — In 
the evening, having this day travelled fix cofTes, I halted at Alum 
Chund, the north-weft limit of the Allahabad diftricts. The coun- 
try had a barren and defolate afpect j the caufe of which was af- 
cribed to the rapacity of a former renter. On entering the fe- 
xauce, I found the hofts with their fpoufes, bufily occupied in th« 
celebration of a marriage. Whether it was owing to the rare oc- 
currence of this ipecies of ceremony, (for they are a people as void 
of reftraint or form as any under the fun) or whether previous 
difficulties had till now obftru&ed the union, I will not pretend 

• The Mahometans of Uje k& of Ali, arc fo called. 


to determine ; but the joy and merriment which circulated in their 
afTembly, could not be furpafied. The men were collected in a 
body, drinking arrack, and beating a tom-tom ; * and the women, 
in a feparate coterie^ were chewing betie, and fpeaking very loud 
and quick. Though this jubilee had engrofled a great fhare of 
their attention, they gave me a good (upper, and a comfortable 

On the 22d, — I arrived at the Kurrah Manickpour, — eight 
cofles and an half. In my way, I halted during the heat of the day 
at the ferauce of Shahzadpour, which together with the town, is 
(aid to have been built by the Shaiftah Khan,* mentioned in my lait 
letter. This nobleman, according to Bernier, was highly celebrated 
for his eloquence, and elegant ftyle of writing, which it is thought 
contributed to promote the early fuccefs of Aurungzebe. The fe- 
rauce of Shahzadpour, built chiefly of brick and mortar, has fpa- 
cious and commodious apartments, but from want of repair, one 
angle of it has fallen into ruins. It is ferioufly to be lamented, 
that edifices founded on principles of fuch public fpirit, or motives 
equally beneficial to the ftate, and whofe ufes arc fo univerfally felt, 
(hould be fuffered to moulder into decay. It would feem, that 
when the larger ferauces were firft founded, certainf portions of land, 
or other eftablilhed funds, were fet apart for keeping them in 

• A (mail drum. 

f He was the maternal uncle- of Aurungicbe. 


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neceflary order : but fuch has been the diftra&ed ftate of Hindoftan 
for thefe later periods, and fuch the oppreffions, or perhaps po- 
verty of its rulers, that thefe grants have either been refumed, or 
diverted into other channels. In ftigmatizing any fpecific clafc of 
men, I believe I have committed an error ; for on a more difpafii- 
onate view, a large mare of cenfure falls on the people at large. In 
India, oftentation, felf-love, vanity, or whatever term may be bert 
fitted to the pa (lion whofe effects I mean to defcribe, has ufurped 
as powerful a fway over the minds of the people, as in any circle 
of the globe j and it is exemplified in various fliapes, but in none 
more than in the foundation of public works. On obferving once, 
a Hindoo of fbme diftinction fuperintending the conftrudion of 
a place of worfhip, I aiked him why, in a country famed for its 
charitable benefactions, fo many old edifices allotted to the pur*- 
pofes of religion and hofpitality were permitted to fall to the 
ground, which, had they been repaired, large fums of money would 
have been Javed, and many a valuable monument of antiquity ref- 
cued from oblivion. He candidly told me, that were he to expend 
his whole eftate on repairs, the work would (till retain the name 
cf its original founder j but by the erection of a new one, it would 
be trarumitted to: pofterity in his own. By this regifter of fame, 
it (houid feem that the entire credit of conftructing a pagoda, 
pond, or ferauce, will be given to him who firft raifed the fabric, 
and no account taken of the occafional embelliiher of fuch (true- 
tures. — This digrefllon hath prevented me from fooner informing 



you, that to-day I loft: my road ; inftead of fimply going to Ma- 
nickpour, my place of deftination, I went to Kurrah Manickpour, 
where I paflfed a very unpleafant night. The air was intenfely 
cold, and my fervants who purfued the right road, carried with 
them my baggage and my purfe. The good woman at the ferauce, 
old, though very active, kindly provided a fupper at the rifk of not 
being paid, for I had advifed her of the mifcarriage ; but me could 
procure no fuccedaneum for a quilt, fo that I was kept fliiveringly 
awake the whole night. 

Adjoining to the village of Kurrah Manickpour, on a hill, are 
the remains of a coniiderable fort. Amongft the ruins I obferved 
fome mutilated fragments of Hindoo fculpture, of the fame ftyle 
as that feen on a curious monument of ancient date in the neigh- 
bourhood of Benares. Feftoons of flowers are fculptured on this 
monument, which for the fimple elegancy of the defign and tafte, 
as well as the ex aft nicety of the execution, may, in my opinion, 
vie with the works of European mafters. The Hindoos of this 
day have a (lender knowledge of the rules of proportion, and none 
of perfpeclive. They are juft imitators, and correct workmen j 
but they pofTefs merely the glimmerings of genius.* 

On the 23d, crofled the Ganges at Gootree, two miles below 

* This oWervation is verified at a village oppofite the city of Benares, at the gar- 
dens of Ramnagur, where Cheyt Sing has ereSed a large range of coftly "buildings, in 
feme of which ftone figures are placed, of vcry«ukwaud dimenfions and dull expreffion. 


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Kurrah Manickpour, and arrived at Muftaphabad, a ft age of nine 
cofles. Almas AH Khan is the manager or renter of a large tract 
of country lying on the fouth of the Ganges, which appears in a 
lefs defolate Irate than any other part of the Vizier's dominions 
which I have ft en. From the ruins of Kurrah fort, the Ganges 
is feen winding beautifully round the bottom of the hill, and on 
the northern (hore, immediately oppofite, ftands the village of 
Manickpour. I found my fervants at Muftaphabad, to whom I 
referred the hofpitable hoftefs, who had been obliged to accompany 
me fo far, for payment of the laft night's fcore. 

On the 24th, — at Bareily, a fortified town, 12 cofles. The 
country from the laft ftation is much covered with jungle,* and 
where the profpec"t opened, but little cultivation appeared, except 
in the diftrifb of Almas, which are but comparatively well con- 
ditioned. I have feen only a land of defolation, exhibiting the 
fcattered veftiges of former profperity. 

On the 25th, — at Doolindy, 8 cofles. The principal town of 
a diftrift, rented by one of the Viziers favorite Hindoos, who has 
laid out a large garden at this place, in which are two neat fum- 
mer houfes. 

On the 26, — at Safeindy, 10 cofles. There is little elfe to note 
than the wild appearance of a barren country ; the reverfe of what 
I expefted to fee in the vicinity of a capital city. 

• All forcft wood in India, is termed junglu 

Vol. L L 



On the 27th,-— at Lucknovv, 8 coffes. I took a lodging in 
the Aflroff ferauce j and to prevent as much as poffible the rifle of 
difcovc-ry, I difcharged all my fervants, except one, on whom I 
could place a reafonable confidence. 

Lucknow is a large and populous city, but wholly inelegant 
and irregular. The Areets are narrow, uneven, and almoft choak- 
ed up with every fpecies of filth. The Goomty, running on the 
north fide of the town, is navigable for boats of a common fize at 


all feafons of the year, and falls into the Ganges between Benares 
and Ghazepour. A line of boats, extended acrofs the river, forms 
a convenient communication with a large fuburb. Shujah-ul- 
Dowlah made Fyzeabad, or Oude, the capital of his dominion j 
but his fan, fetting afide that, with many other of his father's ar- 
rangements, has fixed his refidence at Lucknow. 

Perceiving that fome of. my neighbours began to make in- 
quifitive remarks, I went acrofs the water, and procured a retired 
and commodious apartment in the Hufien Gunge" ferauce. Ha- 
ving fome bufinefs to tranfac*c at Lucknow, previoufly to my 
journey to Europe, I left my fervants at the ferauce, on pretence 
of vifiting the Englifli camp, the general rendezvous of idle ftran- 
gers, and went to the city. Being defirous of feeing a gentleman, 
who I underftood was ftationed there, I approached the door of 
an officer's quarter, and defired the fervants to acquaint their maf- 
ter, that a Moghul merchant, of whom there are many at Luck- 
no.v, requefted permifiion to fee him. Though the entreaty was 


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urged m the fofteft and moft purfuafive tone within the compafs 
of my fpeech, they flatly and roughly rejected it, faying that their 
mafter was eating his breakfaft. Anxious to obtain the wanted 
information, I tried another door which feemed lefs clofely guard- 
ed, but there alfo my prayer was prefered in vain ; and having . 
nothing in my pocket to ftrengthen the argument, I was obliged 
to retire ; though the day was extremely hot, and the diftance to 
my lodging was at leaft four miles. This occurence, however pro- 
du&ive of temporary inconvenience, gave me a fatisfaftory proof 
of the efficacy of my dtfguife, and the fluency of my Mahometan 
language. Many, I dare fay, are the unfortunate plaintiffs in our 
Indian world, who unable to purchafe a paflage through the gates 
of the great, arc thruft away by their rude and rapacious do- 
meftics. — In returning, I faw another European houfe, into which, 
by a fortunate change in the mode of application, I procured ad- 
mittance : for on informing the door-keeper that my attendance 
had been required, I was immediately conducted to his mafter, who 
received me in the kindeft manner, and on many future occafions 
mewed me marks of his friend (hip. — During my flay at Lucknow 
I lodged at the feraucc, and though I remained there twenty days, 
in which time I made many vifits to the Englifti gentlemen, no 
one feemed to regard me with fufpicion. My landlady at firft ex- 
prefled a ftrong defire of knowing the caufc of my frequent 
excurfions ; but not receiving a fatisfactory account, (he con- 
cluded that I had formed fome female intimacy. As this con- 

» * 

L 2 jefture 


je&ure was favourable to my plan, I encouraged It in the mind 
of the good woman, who gave herfelf infinite credit for the dif- 

I am, Dear Sir, 

Your's, &c. &c 




Luckfiow, January 16/i, 1783. 


BEFORE I leave the territories of Aflbffi- 
ud-Dowlah, or, as he is often entitled from the rank he holds, the 
Vizier of the Empire, I will throw together for your perufal fome 
brief remarks on the Oude government. 

This country is bounded on the north, by parts of Napaul and 
Siranagur j on the eaft, by the Englifti pofleffions ; on the fouth, 
by the Jumna ; and on the weft, generally by the Doab, and the 
Ganges. The Oude territories, generally flat and fertile, arc 
watered by the Ganges, Jumna, Gograh, Goomty, and Gunduck, 
exclufwe of many rivulets. Thefe rivers flow through moft of 
the principal towns, and interfeft a large fpace of the country ; 
moft of them being navigable for boats, in all feafons of the year. 
— The Englifti armies may be plentifully fupplied with provifions 
and ammunition, ui the event of executing any military operation 
in that quarter. Thefe rivers alfo prcfent ftrong barriers againft 
the Mahrattah, Seick, or Moghul cavalry. The Vizier's provinces, 
which yield, it is (aid, at this period, a revenue of about two mil- 



lions ftcrling, have greatly decreafed in produce fince the death of 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah. It would be prefumptuous in me to attempt an 
explanation of fuch decreafc. It was fufficitntly mollifying, to 
obferve the common effects of a deftruttive administration. The 
inhabitants fay, that the population of the country is diminifhed, 
and that the commerce, which in former periods was important 
and extenfive, has fallen to decay. Thefe evils which have con- 
tributed to the ruin of the moft powerful dates, and are now 
precipitating the ruin of Oude, can only be eradicated by the ftre- 
nuous exertions of a juft and wife governor : a character devoutly 
to be wifhed for in Oude. It appears, that a large portion of the 
amount now paid by Aflbff-ud-Dowlah into the Company's trea- 
fury at Lucknow, is tranfported from thence in fpecie to relieve 
the neccflities of Bengal, now urgent in the extreme. Much of 
the wealth alfo, which has been accumulated by the fervants of 
the Company refiding in this country, has been conveyed in a fimilar 
mode ; and the mifchicf gathers ftrength from the tenor of our pre- 
fent connection with Aflbff-ud-Dowlah. The channels of commerce 
operate too tardily for meafures which require difpatch, and em- 
brace only the object of the day. If treafure can be procured, no fe- 
condary aids are called in ; no fuccedaneum is fearched for. Thefe 
drains, unfupplied by any native fource, muft foon exhauft the 
vigour of a country, where in addition to the grievance, commerce 
is loaded with monopoly, and influenced by the hand of power. 
The demand for bills on Bengal, which has been preffing and con- 

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tinued, gave them often a value of feventcen and an half per cent, 
on the Lucknow amount ; a profit which enabled the bankers to 
export the value in filver.* — The refuraption of the Jaguir, or 
alienated lands, has not been productive of the promifed benefits. 
The officers who enjoyed thofc benefactions, were many of them 
men of expenfive manners ; they promoted the confumption of 
valuable manufactures, and poffeffing rank and diftinclion, they 
maintained a numerous body of dependants. Whether from a 
fuccefiion of oppreflive managers, or that the inhabitants do not 
experience the fruits of former liberality, it is evidently feen, that 
the refumed diftricts are ill cultivated, and thinly inhabited. 

Little remains to be faid of the Vizier's military eftablifli- 
ment j it being only ufeful in aflifting the collection of the revenue, 
enforcing the obedience of the lefler vafials, or furnifhing a guard 
for his perfon. The defence of the country wholly refts on the 
forces of the Englifli, which are fupplied according to emergency. 
The troops at this time, amount to about eight thoufand fepoys, 
and five hundred Europeans, with the requifite train of artillery. 
The treafury of Aflbff-ud-Dowlah is now low, but it is faid, that 
he has nearly paid off the refidue of a large debt, which had been 
accumulating fince the period of his father's death. It is to be 
fincerely wifhed, that the meafures purfued in future, may rcdrefs 

• A flow of commerce, which now more diffufely conveys the manufactures of this 
country to Bengal, has reduced this premium to four per cent. 



the grievances of this country } which though of fuch extenfive 
com pa Is, and pofiefling fo valuable a refource, bears the alpcct of 
rapid decay : and though its pofition, and native weaknefs, might 
render the alliance profitable to the Englifti, no folid benefits have 
hitherto arifen from our connection with Oude. 

I am, Dear Sir, 

Yours, &c. &c. 


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Furruckabad) January 26tb> 1783. 

I NOW beg to prefent you with a (ketch of 
my route to Furruckabad, where I purpofe refting two or three 
days with my countrymen, whom I (hall not probably fee again 
until my arrival in Europe. 

On the 18th at noon, I left my hoftefs's quarters at Lucknow, 
and after a warm and dufty ride of feven cofles, halted at the village 
of Nowill Gunge. The next day I arrived at Meahgunge, a ftage 
alfo of feven colTes, and was much rejoiced to find that my little 
fteed continued to poflefs high health and vigor. He is endowed, 
I fear, with a too great predominance of the latter quality, and 
that in its word fenfe; for if I am to judge from his carnal han- 
kerings, and ftrong ncighings of love to every mare he fees, it 
would too plainly appear that his life has not been of the chafteft 
kind. But as it is faid, and in holy writ I believe, " that 
there is no wifdom under the girdle," meaning, evidently, the 
girdles of the lords and ladies of the creation, we may furely 
Vol. I. M excufe 

?o forsteh's travels, 

excufe the wanderings and frailties of a poor horfe, whofe paf- 
fions receive no check from conftitutional modefty, or virtuous 

Mfahgunge, if I am informed right, was founded by Almas, 
and feems to be a thriving and populous village. From the 
various intelligence which I have procured, it is evident that 
the. renter here is active, indubious, and regular. The inha- 
bitants fay, that his rigour in collecting the revenue is, in a 
certain degree, qualified by a fteady obfervance of his contracts. — I 
patted this evening in the company of a Patan, who was returning 
to his home from Lucknow, where he had expended the greateft" 
part of his eftate in the fociety of the ladies, and in the plcafurcs 
of arrack j but in the laft he very copioufly indulged. In the 
courfe of two hours and a Halt', I beheld him with amazement 
empty two bottles of a fpirit fo harm and fiery, that the like dofe- 
muft have turned the head of an elephant. The Patan made an 
apology for this exceflive potation, by obferving, that it removed 
from his mind every fenfation of fbrrow and melancholy, — paf- 
fions, which, he faid greatly annoyed him in his cooler mo- 
ments. This jovial Mahometan was attended by an old mufi- 
cian, marvclloufly ill apparelled, and deficient in the larger por- 
tion of his teeth, who during the interludes of his matter's amufe- 
ment, ftrummed on a miferable guitar, which he accompanied 
with fome of Hafez's odes ; but uttered in a voice that would 
have ft ruck difmay into the fierceft beaft that ranges the foreft. 


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—At this gunge, a fervant whom I hired at Lucknow, and my 
only attendant, carried off, in the night, my matchlock and a 
curious dagger. 

On the 20th, at Banghur Mow — 10 cones — a large village in 
the diftrict of Almas. — Here the Patan having drunk out all the 
fubftance of his purfe, fold a piece of family tin-plate j the pro- 
duce of which raifed the fum of three rupees. He took that even- 
ing an extraordinary draught of his favourite fpirit ; and, that his 
pleafures might have no alloy, he called in a good-natured girl, who 
for one half-rupee cfifplayed to the Patan a more ample fund of 
dalliance and allurement, than could be purchafed by us for twenty 
at Lucknow. — He exprefled a fovereign contempt for Almas,* who 
be faid being precluded from the pleafures of the fex, difliked and 
difcouraged them. Many of Almas's wounded fepoys were brought 
into the ferauce from a fort in the woods, which had been reduced 
by him after a fiege of fix weeks. Thefe men were fhockingly man- 
gled. — Some had balls lodged in their bodies, others were fcorched 
by a combuftible matter thrown on them during the attack. — Being 
poflefTed of a few medical materials, I applied dreflings to fuch cafes 
as could likely receive any benefit from the afliftance ? and I was 
pleafed to obferve the fuccefsful effe&s of fome of the application*. 
The want of chirurgical help is an evil which affecls, in a grievous 
manner, the native military fervice of Hindoftan, efpecially fince 

* He is a eunuch. 

M 2 the 


thc-ufe of fire-arms has become fo prevalent j and it will be no exag- 
eration to fay, that a greater number of the country troops 
are deftroyed by the effects of wounds, than flain in immediate 


After a long journey of 14 cofles, in which I croffed the 
Ganges, and had nearly cxhaufkd the ftrength of my horfe, I 
arrived on the 2 1 ft at the ancient city of Kinnouge, fituate on the 
Callinuady, a fmall river that falls into the Ganges, about twenty 
miles below Furruckabad. Kinnouge, before the period of the 
Mahometan conqucft, ranked among it the moll populous and 
opulent cities of Hindoftan. It is mentioned in teftimony of its 
grandeur, that Kinnouge contained thirty thoufend mops for the 
fale of betle, and afforded employment for fix thoufand female 
dancers, and muficians. — A vaft mafs of ruins interfperfed through 
a wide fpace, marks the ancient extent and grandeur of Kinnouge j 
though few v diftinc"t, veftiges now exift, except fome parts of a 
flone temple ereftcd in ancient times to the honor of Setah, the 
wife of Ram, which has been exorcifed by fome zealous Maho- 
metan, and converted into a place of worfliip. The prefent race 
of Indian Mahometans not being fervent in the caufe of religion, 
or being rather fupinery regardlefs of it, (many of them holding 
the memory of Mahomet in as little reverence as they would that of 
Thomas-a-Becket, had they ever heard of him) the mofque is 
now defiled and abandoned. In feveral cavities which the rain has 
formed, I obferved parts of brick wall, funk twenty feet at leaft 



beneath the level of the town ; and the inhabitants fay, that in 
digging into the foundation, fmall pieces of gold and filver are 
often difcovered. They alfo fay, that Kinnouge was once de- 
ft royed by an inundation; but as few Hindoo records are di- 
verted of mythological ftory, (lender ufes only can be derived 
from them. The Mahrattas plundered this city, and laid wafte 
the adjacent country, previoufly to the battle of Panifrett.* 
After this important event, which gave a ftrength and perma- 
nency to the Mahometan power in Upper India, Ahmed Khan 
Bungilh, the chief of Furruckabad, took pofifefllon of the dif- 
tricls of Kinnouge, which during his admin ift ration, began to 
emerge from the ruin in which it had been long involved, 
and aflumed fymptoms of a recovery which are now wholly 

Arrived on the 23d at Khodah Gunge, — nine coffes, — a 
village in the territory of MuzzufFer Jung, the adopted fon of 
Ahmed Khan : but no more like the father, — excufe the phrafe, — 
than " I am like Hercules." — This young man, averfe to, or in- 
capable of bufinefs, is a tributary of Aflbf-ud-Dowlah, who by 
the high fine he has impofed on Furruckabad, may be faid to 
govern it himfelf. 

On the 24th, — at Furruckabad — nine coflfes. — Finding the 
pleafures of my Patan friend grow expenfive, and very noify, I 

* It was fought in February, 1761. 



took an eafy leave of him, and flipped unperceived into the 
EngUfti artillery camp, where I am treated, as I have been in 
all parts of this hofpitable country, with every mark of kind- 

I am, my Dear Sir, 

Yours, &c. &c. 


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Ramfore, February 5/^, 1783. 


The deure on every occafion of teftifing 
the fenfe I entertain of your friendfhip, prompts me to give you 
the relation of my route from Furruckabad to Rampore. 

The progrefs of the firft day, the 29th January, 1783, which 
was a long one, — not lefs than eighteen cones, — brought me and 
my horfe, both greatly jaded, to Kytterah j a large village on the 
weft fide of the Ganges. 

The next day at Allahapour, — nine cofTes. — This place not be- 
ing a common ftage, nor containing a ferauce, my accommo- 
dations were (lender, and thofe extorted by the force of bold 
language, and a few extra pence. At Allahapour there is only 
one houfc of entertainment, and that for the article of eating 
only ; — you may fleep where you can. After fupper, I "pro- 
pofed to the landlady with every token of decorum, that we 
fliould lodge that night under the lame roof. The dame mif- 
conftruing the purpofe of my requeft, and fired with indigna- 


tion at the idea of its indecency, poured on me a talent of r?-^ 
proach. In the exercife of the tongue a female of Hindoftan 
hath few equals; and if fhe hath ever followed a .cimp, I would 
pronounce her invincible on any ground in Europe. An Englifh 
woman, educated at our mod noted feminarics, and (killed in all 
the various compafs of debate, will, perhaps, on fomc interesting 
occafion, maintain the conteft for an hour, which then terminates 
in blows and victory. But an Indian dame, improved by a few 
campaigns, has been known to wage a colloquial war, without in- 
troducing one manual effort, for the fpace of three fucceflive days j 
deeping and eating at reafonable intervals.* There is a fertility of 
imagination, a power of expreflion, inherent in the mind, and vo-. 
cal ability, of an Afiatic, particularly a female one, which cannot 
be engendered in the cold head of an European : and there is an 
extent of language alfo peculiar to the Eaft, which the limits of 
Weftern fpeech do not contain. — Let me not forget the ftory of 
my landlady, whofe words, flirill and piercing, yet feem to vibrate 
in my ear. — With every fymptom of a virulent female pride, and 
the femblance of outrageous virtue, (he declared that I (hould not 
fleep under her roof, — I might, if I liked, place my bed on the 
out-fide of the door. — Finding the night growing cold, and not 
being imprefled w*th fentiments of refpett for mine hoftefs, whofe 

• Such prolonged engagements are diftinguiflicd by the particular term of " haujfy 
Ltrbay," or the ftale war. 


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perlbn had nothing lovely in it, I planted my bed fomewhat rudely 
in the mid ft of her apartment, telling her, flie might difpofe of 
herfelf as (he deemed moft fitting, but that my deportment would 
be chafte, and confident with the rules of honor, though appear- 
ances might be unfavourable. The good woman perceiving my 
inattention to her clamorous reprefentation, was glad to compound 
the matter, and take a fmall pecuniary compenfation, for the in- 
jury her character might fuffer. 

On the next day I went to Badam, a ftation of eight coffes.*— 
Badam is feid to have been founded four hundred years ago, by one 
of the Seljukian kings ; and from a magnificent extenfive city, is 
now funk into a fmall mouldering town. The ruins of the fort 
ftill ferve to exhibit a mortifying picture of former grandeur ; but 
fuch is the reverfe of its condition, that the howling wolf, and 
the fcreeching owl, now become its only tenants, have (implanted 
the gay damfel, and the care foothing minftrel. Then, my friend, 
*ere thy youthful blood ceafes to run lightly through its now elaf- 
tic channels, — ere thy mind refufes longer to receive the glowing 
tints of fancy's pencil, — feize the fair pleafures of the hour, 
and following the precepts of our Hafez, leave the reft to fate ! 
— I paffed this evening in the company of the fair, (though the 
epithet may not literally apply to our Indian ladies), who, for 
a moderate offering, fung, laughed, and danced around me until 
mid- night. 

On the ifl: of February, after a tedious journey of fourteen 
Vol. I. N codes, 


cofies, leading through a lonely unhofpitablc country, I arrived at 
Ovviah. — Of the few fellow-travellers purfuing the the fame track, 
two wolves, a fox, and two hares, compofed the greater number. 
The (hrubs and high grafs had fo concealed the path, that I was 
completely bewildered, and had loft my way, when a fmatl village 
on an eminence attracted my notice, and held out the profpeft of 
relief : but fuch is the inftability of fublunary pleafurc, that this 
promifing mark proved a falfe beacon. The hamlet was unroofed, 
and its inhabitants had fought a more friendly land. Then, in the 
bitternefs of my heart, I gave up Shujah-ud-Dowlah to as many 
devils as chofc to take him, and was about configning the Englifti 
to the fame crew, for having expelled from a country which they 
had made populous and opulent, the extenfive tribe of Rohillas. 
How infatiable, cruel, and how deftructive, even of its own pur* 
pofcs, appears ambition, when placed in this light. It prompted 
a prince, already poflefTed of an ample fair territory, to feize, 
with barely the colour of pretence, the domain of his neighbours, 
who by a falutary fyftem of government, had enriched their coun- 
try, and had made their names refpecled. The conqueror, by the 
fortune of war, fubjects into a province this flourifhing territory, 
which is foon converted into defolate plains, and deferted villages. 
This is not, I truft, the language of exaggeration, or the colouring 
of fancy. It is a fimple, grievous truth, forcing itfelf on the 
notice of the mod curfory obferver. — The town of Owlah, once 
crowded with inhabitants, and adorned with mofques and fpacious 


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buildings, is now verging to ruin, and many or' its ftreets are 
choaked up with fallen habitations. 

On the 2d of February, at Shahabad, — fourteen cofles, — a large 
village in the diftrifts of Fyze-ullah-Khan. The whole of this 
chiefs country evinces the beneficial effects arifing from the en- 
couragement of hulbandry, and the aid of an active government. 
Populous villages, fldrted by extenfive fields of corn, are feen on 
all fides ; and the haughty independent fpirit which invariably 
pervades every clafs of the people, mark their abhorrence of de- 
lpotifra. Many of the Rohillas, who had been driven from the 
country after the death of Hafiz Rhamur, have fettled in this 

On the 3d, at Rampour, — fourteen cofles. Fyze-ullah-Khan, 
refides in this town, which the general refort of his civil and 
military officers, has now made populous, and wealthy. 

I am, Dear Sir, 

Your's, &c. &c. 

[ The following hiftory of the Rohillas, and Shujah-ud-Dowlah, compiled fince 
the date of the letters, is founded on fundry original documents, and various local 
information, obtained during my refidence in the northern parts of India, and has 
been introduced in this place, though interrupting the fcries of the letters, to 
bring into one view, a body of relative fa&s.] 


KJ U . 

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IT appears, that about the year 1720, Bifti- 
arut Khan, and Daoud Khan, of the tribe of Rohillas, accom- 
panied by a fmall number of their needy and adventurous country- 
men came into Hindoftan in queft of military fervice. They were 
firft entertained by a Madar Sana, the Hindoo chief of Scrouly.f 
who, by robbery and predatory excurfions, maintained a large party 
of banditti. In the plunder of an adjacent village, Daoud Khan 

• This appellation, I have been informed, is derived from Rai> a word in the 
Afghan language fignifying a hill or mountain ; and is the name alfo of a certain tract 
of territory, the native country of the Rohillas, fituated between Pdheur and Cabul. 

t A (mall town in the north-weft quarter of Rohilcund. 



captured a youth of the Jatt feci,* whom he adopted, and brought 
up in the Mahometan faith, by the name of Ali Mahomet ; and 
though he had. children born to Lim in marriage, Daoud Khan 
diitinguifhcd this boy by f>re-eminent marks or parental affection. 
Madar Saha afligncd to the body of Rohillas, which foon increafed, 
certain lands f for their maintenance. Goolareah and fome other 
villages, were given to Biftiarut Khan ; and Daoud Khan ob- 
tained Burneah and Bcouly.J 

Whilst the Rohillas were yet in this limited ftate, Shah Alum 
Khan, an Afghan Moll ah, § vifited his countrymen in India-; and 
it is faid that he had particular claims of friendmip on Daoud 
Khan, being either the adoptive father of that chief, or having 
afforded him in his youth the means of fubfiftence. In whatever 
relation the Mollah flood to Daoud Khan, it is allowed that he 
was hofpitably treated at Beouly and on returning to Afghan- 
istan, was furniflied with a fum of money for defraying the expences 
of his journey. Shah Alum came a fecond time to-Kuthair,J| where 

• This feci, a numerous and powerful one rn the northern parts of India, is claflid 
in the fourth, or iiodcr, tribe of the Hindoos. 

t The Rohilla officers who flood next in authority to thole chiefs, were Cairn 
Khan, Shadie Khan, Permaul Khan, Sultan Khan, and Azum Khan Dhunghtah. 

t Village* fltujtted in the diftricti o: SullauCse, a divifion of Hohilcund, which lies 
40 computed miles to the weftward of Bareily. — See Rcnncl's map. 

§ Mollah is an appellation given to thofe who are flcillcd in the religious doctrine 
and laws of Mahomet. 

I The original name of a part < f Rohilcund, prcvioufly to the period of the Rohilla 
cenqucfl, and ltfll adopted in the public regiftcr* of the country. 


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he again experienced the gcnerofity of Daoud Khan ; but on going 
back to his country, he was killed, and his effects were plundered. It 
has been faid, that this affaffination was committed at the inftigation 
of Daoud Khan, in revenge of fome haughty exprefliom of the 
Mollah to that chief. I have been wholly, prompted to make this 
mention of Alum Khan, from his being the father of Hafiz 
Rhamut, who in latter times became fo confpicuous and unfor- 
tunate. .! 

The Rohillas, quarrelling with Madar Saha, retired from his 
country, and aflbciating thcmfelves with Chand Khan, the chief 
of Bareily * they jointly entered into the fervice of Azmuth Khan, 
the Governor of Moradabad.f They did not remain long at-* 
tached to this officer, but moving towards the northern mountains 
they made incurlions into the territory of the Rajah of Cum- 
maioun. Chand Khan had previoufly refuted to proceed on this 
expedition with the Rohillas, who after various fnccefs, were 
wholly worfted. The Rohillas had penetrated into the interior 
country, but being furrounded on all fides by the mountaineers, 
who cut off their fupply of provifion, they were compelled to fub* 
mit to diigraceful terms of releafement. The perfons of Daoud 


* Bareily, a fpacious well built town, in the centre of Rohilcund — See Rennet's 
map. ** * 

f A town formerly of great note, fituatc in the northern part of Rohilcund. — See 
Kennel's map. 

% A fpacious traft of mountainous country, (abject to a Hindoo Chief} and for- 
ming the north- eaft boundary of Rohilcund. 



Khan, and Ali Mahomet, were delivered to the Rajah, who put 
the former to death ; and the like fate would have awaited the fon, 
had he not made his cicape. The Rohillas fay, that Daoud Khan 
was not furrendered to the chief of Cummaioun, but (lain by a 
party of mountaineers, who had attacked him by furprize. The 
RohiUa party after this difafter withdrew to Beouly and Burneah, 
where they had, antecedently to the Cummaioun expedition, lodged 
their families j and in a fhort fpace of time it is feen, that they 
feizcd on the diftri&s of Madar Sana, their firft matter, who fell 
in one of the defultory actions that followed this invafion. Ali 
Mahomet, after the death of Daoud Khan, had been declared chief * 
of the party j nor did he, though then a youth, feem unworthy 
of the charge. He was brave, enterprizing, and never failed to 
improve the occafions of advancing his power and enlarging his 
territory. — An eunuch who refided at Munounah,f and managed 
the affairs of thofe orarahs of the court who held granted lands 
in Kuthair, had Incited Ali Mahomet, from fome motive of re- 
fentment, to invade the pofleffions of the chief of Owlah ; 

which were foon reduced by the Rohillas, and ultimately an- 


• Mahomet Khan, the fon of Daoud Khan, either from being fuperfeded in his fa- 
ther's afftftion by Ali Mahomet, or at the period uf Daoud Khan's death, being exclu- 
de! by the Rohilla offices frum the fucce&on, retired to Furruckabad, v.hfie he was 
received into the Bunglifh family. It is mentioned alfo in a nianufcript which I have 
feen, that nt the time of his father's death, Mahomet Khan was an infant, and that be 
remained iomc >..irs :u ue family of Ali Mahomet. 

f A town in Rohilcund. 


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nexed to their territory. Ali Maliomet found, which he had 
fought for, a pretext to quarrel with the eunuch, whom he 
engaged,* and flew in a pitched battle; the fuccefs of which, 
inverted him with the eftates of the nobles, and a large booty. 
Ali Mahomet, chiefly by the afliftance of the Vizier Kum- 
mer ud Dein, not only made his peace at court, but obtained a 
commiflion for collecting the revenue of the penfion lands, which 
it is faid he punctually remitted. -f 

From this period, may be dated the firft important eftablifh- 
ment of the Rohilla power in Rohilcund : a name by which 
they diftinguifhed the Kuthair diftricls, and their other territories 
on the eaft fide of the Ganges. Azmut Ulla Khan} being removed 
from the government of Moradabad, Hunund, an Hindoo officer 
of note, was ordered to proceed to that place, and exterminate the 
government of the Rohillas. It appears, that Oradut Ul Mulck,§ 
a powerful omrah at the court of Mahomet Shah, advifed and 
promoted this mcafure, in revenge of the death of the eunuch, 
who had been his agent in the management of an extenfive Jaguir, 

• The battle in which the eunuch was Qain, happened in 1727. 

t An a& of fuch avowed rebellion, committed within almoft the prccinfts of the 
couft, marks an epocha of the decline of the Mogul Empire, and confpicuoufly (hews, 
tkat the power and vigor which had rendered its arms invincible under Acbar, and 
Aurungtebe, no longer cxiftcd. 

% In fome papers recording Rohilla hiftory, it is mentioned, that Azmut Ullah was 
forcibly deprived of his Government by Ali Mahomet. 

§ This officer was alfo known by the name of Amii Khan. 

Vol. I. 




which he held in the diftrids of Munounah and Owlah. The 
forces of Hunund were encountered by the Rohillas under the 
command of Ali Mahomet,* and wholly defeated. Hunund, to- 
gether with his fon, fell in battle ; and the diftrifts of Moradabad, 
with thofe of Bareily, were feized on by Ali Mahomet. — About 
' this time Azim Khan Dungheah, a Rohilla who had been em- 
ployed in the fervice of the zemindar of Peleabeat.f joined Ali 
Mahomet j whom it is faid he urged to invade the pofleffions of 
his late mafter. The Rohilla, who embraced with eagernefs every 
opportunity of extending his conquefts, and acquiring plunder, 
attacked the Hindoo, and drove him from his refidence. After the 
death of Hunund, it is mentioned, though without any accurate 
detail of fads, and a total omiflion of date, that Meer Munnoo, the 
fon of the Vizier Kummer ud Dein, was fent into Rohilcund 
with an army to compel Ali Mahomet to account for the Rohil- 
cund revenue, and to rcftore the artillery which had been attached 
to the troops of Hunund. Ali Mahomet met Meer Munnoo 
at a paffage of the Ganges near Daranaghur.i where an adjuft- 
ment was effefted ; and the daughter of the Rohilla, it is alfo faid 
given to Meer Munnoo*s brother in marriage. No other dates arc 

• This event happened A. D. 1 740, the year after Nadir Shah'* invafion of Indu. 

+ A town in the north caft quauer of Rohilcund, near the foot of a wooUy range 
of hills. — Vide Rennet's map. 

\ A town on the bank of the Ganges, in the north weft quarter of Rohilcund.— 
Sec Rennel's map. 


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affixed to the arrival of Hafiz, Rhamut Khan* in India, than that 
he joined his countrymen daring the adminiftration of Ali 
Mahomet ; who being defirous of effacing any refentment that 
he might harbour for the murder of Alum Khan, quickly ad- 
vanced this chief to an important ftation. Dhoondy Khan, a 
nephew of Alum Khan, who probably came to Rohilcund about 
the fame period, was alfo much favored by Ali Mahomet. Actu- 
ated more perhaps by the defire of conqueft, than retaliating 
former difgrace, Ali Mahomet invaded Cummaioun, which he 
over-run, and compelled the chief to take refuge in the Serinagur 
country.f He amafled a large booty in this expedition, which 
was concluded by the exaction of an annual tribute ; and Rohilla 
troops were ftationed in the forts of Caftiipour and Rooderpour* 
dependencies of Cummaioun, which he kept pofleflion of, to re- 
cord, it is faid, the revenge that had been taken for the murder of 
his father. 

Ali Mahomet, who refuted chiefly at Owlah, eftablifhed 
throughout his territory a permanent fyftem of government, which 
though occafionally rigorous, afforded a general protection to 
the lower clafs of people. Surdar Khan, who had approved 
himfelf in many actions a brave foldier, was appointed to the 

• Hark Rhamut, feme documents 6jr, firft came into India in the chafer of a 
t An Hindoo territory, bounding Rohilcund on the north. 

O 2 com- 


command of the army ; and certain lands were granted him 
for his maintenance. Futtah Khan,* with a comformable do- 
nation, was created the public treafurer, and keeper of the houfe- 
hold ftores. Pclcabeat and Bareily were given to Hafiz Rha- 
mut ; and Moradabad r to Dhoondy Khan. Ali Mahomet feems 
to have held the imperial authority at this period in a low de- 
gree of eftimation, for he openly id zed on fome valuable com- 
modities, which the Governor of Bengal had difpatched, by the 
road of Rohilcund, to court, for the ufe of the King. Setting 
alfo at defiance the power of Sufdah Jung, the Subahdar of 
Oude, he plundered a large quantity of valuable timber that had 
been cut down for his ufe in the northern parts of Rohil- 
cund. Sufdar Jung, who had; ever been inimical to the late 
Conquerors of Kuthair, acquired a fufficient influence over Ma- 
homet Shah,-f- to induce that Prince to attack AH Maho- 
met. The Rohillas were fecretly fupported by the Vizier Kum- 
mer ud Dcin, who, bore an inveterate hatred to the Subah- 
dar of Oude; and who, in. the ufage of the courtiers of that 
day, ftrengthened his party by every powerful connection that he 
could procure. 

* Futtah Khan, originally a Hindoo, was adopted by Ali Mahomet. The mage 
of male adoption prevails even in Mahometan families where there arc many Tons. 

t Sufdar Jung chiefly perfuaded Mahomet Shah to undertake this expedition, by » 
flipulation of paj ing one lack of rupees for every marching, and half a lack for every 
halting day, of the Imperial army, until its arrival in Rohilcund. 



The King entered Rohilcund with a great force,* and with- 
out coming to an engagement, poflefled himfelf of the open 
country. AH Mahomet, aware of his inability to refill the 
King's army, and feeling perhaps a reluctance to face his Sove- 
reign in the field, had retired into the woods of Banghur,f the 
Hurts of whkh were defended by a chain of forts that had been 
erected by the R oh ill as at a former period. Ali Mahomet main- 
tained this port for fome time, but having no hope of relief, and 
being fcantily fupplied with provifions, he furrendered himfelf 
into the hands of the King ; and at the interceulon of Kummer 
ud Dein, was pardoned. 

The power of the Rohillas was now annihilated in Rohilcund, 
and all their officers and principal people were removed to Dehli. 
This remarkable event, which happened in the year 1745, fhews 
that Ali Mahomet muft have been effentially aided by the diftract- 
ed ftate of the empire, during the Perfian invafion, in the in- 
creafe and eftabliihment of his dominion. It appears that he re- 
mained about a year at Dehli, under the immediate protection of 
the Vizier, when at that nobleman's recommendation, he was ap- 
pointed the military governor of Sirhend, and ordered to reduce the 

• During the campaign of Mahomet Shah in Rohilcund, he gave to the Shote river 
the name of Yaa WufTadar, or faithful friend, from the great conveniences derived by 
hwarmy from this ftream, whofe water* are (alubrious, and flow in a beautifully winding 

t Tbxfc woods lie between Owlah and Ramporc.— Vide Rennel's map 



former chief of that place, who had thrown off his allegiance to 
the empire. Previoufly to his proceeding on this fervice, AH 
Mahomet had been required to fend Abed-ullah and Fyze-ullah, 
two of his fons, to Lahore,* to be kept as hoftages for the good 
conduct of the father. The Rohilla, who on every occafion dis- 
played the ability and fpirit of a foldier, defeated the Sirhend rebel, 
and reduced to his fubjeaion Kote Roy, one of the ftrongeft 
fortreffes in the upper part of India. During the refidence of Ali 
Mahomet at Sirhend, his party, which had been joined by a body 
of two or three thoufand marauding Afghans, was computed at 
ten thoufand cavalry, and fifteen or twenty thoufand infantry of 
various denominations. The Rohilla did not take any part in the 
Durany war jf but whilft the Moghul and Afghan armies were 
approaching to action, he quitted the Punjab and retired to Hurd- 
war, from whence he penetrated in 1747 into Rohilcund, which 
he rapidly conquered. The two fons of Ali Mahomet, who had 
been delivered as hoftages for his good conduct, were taken by 
Ahmed Shah, the Durany, in the fort of Sirhend i where they had 
been placed by Kummur ud Dein, previoufly to the reduction of 
that town by the Afghans. Ali Mahomet could not long have en- 
joyed the fruits of his laft fuccefs ; for his death, according to the 


* Meer Munnoo, the fori of the Vizier, w • at that time the Governor of Lahore* 
t The firft invaiion of the Durany Ahmed Shah. 


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memoirs of that time, happened in the latter end of 1747,* at 

Perhaps no foldier that has appeared in India, pafled through 
more a&ive and eventful fcenes of life, than Ali Mahomet. He 
was born, and grew up it may be faid, amidft the din of arms. 
He fell when a boy into the hands of Daoud Khan. An inceflant 
fcries of warfare occupied his manhood, and he died at the period 
of finally fubduing the territory, which he had before arduoufly 
fought for, conquered, and had loft. — This chief bore the reputa- 
tion of a liberal encourager of agriculture and commerce. He 
was ftricl and rigorous in the exactions which he levied from his 
fubjecls ; but as he rarely infringed, he never remitted a ftipulated 
engagement. Owlah, his ufual place of rcfidence, and the princi- 
pal town of Rohilcund, he ornamented with numerous public and 
private edifices,, which were constructed and arranged with an order 
and tafte feldom ken in Indian cities. 

Saud Ullah Khan, the third fon-f- of Ali Mahomet, fucceeded 
to the fupremacy of the Rohilla Dominion. In obedience to the 
laft counfel of his father, who had recommended Hafiz Rhamut to 
his young fucceflbr,^ as the mod capable of the Rohillas, Saud 
Uilah appointed that officer his deputy in the management of pub- 

• Or the beginning of 1748.. 

f The two cider were yet kept in confinement by the Durannies. 
% At hi* father's death, Saud Ullah was about twelve years of age. 



Kc affairs. During the adminiftration of Saud Ullah, the Patahs 
of Furruckabad, commanded by their chief, Cairn Khati Bung- 
hifli, invaded Rohilcund. Confident of fuccefs, and prefuming 
on the military reputation which he had acquired, the Patau pre- 
cipitately quitted the body of his army, and advanced with a party 
of his principal officers. A detachment of Rohillas in ambufcade, 
fired at Caim Khan as he pafled, and killed him, with fome other 
perfons of his retinue. The army, on the death of their leaden 
fled, leaving the baggage and guns behind, which were captured 
by the Rohillas, and eft i mated at a great value. Saud Ullah, faid 
at that time to be fourteen years of age, had accompanied the army 
on this expedition.* Sufdar Jung ftill retaining a ftrong animofity 
to the Rohillas, and defirous of improving the occafion of Saud 
Ullah's minority, formed a junction with Mulhar Row, the chief 
of a large body of Marhatta cavalry, and penetrated into Rohil- 
cund . The Rohillas, unable to refift fo large a force, took (belter 
in the ikirts of the northern mountains, where they remained, until 
fome revolutions at court caufed Sufdar Jung to move toward* 
Dehli. He carried with him the ftrength of his own, and the 

* The invafton of Caim Khan happened in the latter end of 1749. Tt appears that 
Mahomet Khan, the fon of Daoud Khan, who had taken refuge at Furruckabad, ac- 
companied Caim Khan on the expedition, and fell in the action. In the coutfc of the 
tame year, an officer named Kuttib-ud-Dein, the fon or grand fan of Azmut Uluh 
Khan, was appointed bv the court to the Government of Moradabad, and entered Ro- 
hilcund with an army which was encountered and defeated by the RohiUas. 


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auxiliary army,* {rationing in Rohilcund, a detachment for the 
purpofe of maintaining pofleflions of the diftricts he had con- 
quered : the Rohillas did not long continue in concealment, but 
collecting their fcattered forces, they expelled the remaining troops 
of Sufdar Jung. 

It appears that about the year 1 750, the two elder fons of Ali 
Mahomet, having been enlarged by Admed Shah Dourany, came 
into Rohilcund, and folicitcd a portion of the paternal eftate. 
Their claims were fubmitted to the deliberation of the principal 
Rohilla officers, among whom Hafiz took the lead, and it was re- 
Iblved that the territory which had been perfonally poflefled by Ali 
Mahomet, mould be divided amongft his fons.-f* Violent difputes 
loon arofe amongft the brothers, in the detail of which, little ac- 
curacy is obferved by the writers of the tracts, that have come 
into my pofleflion : nor would the relation, confiding of perplexed 
fcenes of treachery and intrigue, tend to forward the general plan 
of this treatife. It will be fufficient to fay, that the Rohilla chiefs, 
aware of the difficulties that affected the late arrangement, and dif- 
fatisfied at the conduct of Abed UUah Khan, the eldeft of the bro- 

• It is mentioned, that the Marhattas withdrew from Rohilcund, on receiving 1 
bond of fifty lacks of rupees from the Rohillas ; and it mould feem, that they made 
the non-payment of this bond an oftenfible caufe for invading Rohilcund, in the years 
1772 and 1773. 

t Ali Mahomet had fix fons, Abed Ullah Khan, Fyze-Ullah Khan, Saud Ullah, 
Mahomet Yar Khan, Allah Yar Khan, and Martaza Khan. 

Vol. I. P thers, 


thers, united in force, and expelled him with fome other branches 
of the family from Rohilcund. Fyze-Ullah Khan, the fecond fon 
of Ali Mahomet, obtained, after the expulfion of Abed Ullah, the 
diftricb of Rampour j which his prudent wary conduct has pre- 
ferved to this day, though he has been involved in a feries of do- 
meftic feuds, and was once inverted and reduced to extreme diftrefs 
by a powerful army.* The diftriCts which had been allotted to 
Abed Ullah, for a fhort time confidered the ruling chief, were now 
beftowed on Saud Ullah Khan : who again rofe to his former fu- 
periority of ftation. Hafiz Ahmed, having acquired by his office, 
military ability, and genius, and his extenfive influence in Rohil- 
cund, gradually diminimed, and at length wholly fuperfeded, the 
authority of Saud Ullah, who affenting to the offer of a pennon 
Hafiz was avowedly advanced to the fupreme adminiftration of af- 
fairs. The caufe of this revolution is afcribed to the indolent and 
diflipatcd genius of Saud Ullah, who, it was reprefented by the 
party of Hafiz, would foon wafte the refourccs of the country, 
and entail a difgrace on the nation. Without fearching into re- 
moter motives, it may be directly imputed to the ambition of 
Hafiz, who no longer held in remembrance the hand that had 
raifed him to honours, and had committed a fon to his protection ; 
but rent without a fcruple every bond that confined his fchemes of 

• The combined army of F.nglifli and Shujah-ud-Doulah, in 1774, 
f It is faid th t the other chiefs contributed to this payment, which amounted to 
tight lacks of rupees per annum. 



grandeur. Hafiz Rhamut had borne a part in the actions of his 
countrymen in India; he had feen that no limits are affixed to 
power, and that no duties, prefcribed for the guidance of men, 
impede the ftrides of ambition. The death of Saud Ullah Khan, 
which happened in 1761, at Owlah, contributed to fix the power 
of Hafiz Rhamut, and relieved him from his proportioned pay- 
ment of the fum, that had been afligned for the maintenance of 
that chief. 

The want of eftablifhed fa&s for defcribing in regular order 
the Htftory of the Rohilks, confined me to the ufe of fuch mate- 
rials, as immediately mark their military progrefs, or lead to the 
eflential changes of their government. In my Rohilla papers it is 
mentioned, that on Sufdar Jung's death,* Ghaze-ud-Dein, the 
Vizier of the Empire, f joined by Ahmed Khan Bungufli,! march- 
ed an army into Oude, and commenced hoftilities againft Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah, who had refufed to make any pecuniary acknowledg- 
ments to the court on the event of his acceffion, or render an 
account of the perfonal eftate of his father.§ Shujah-ud-Dowlah, 
aware of his inability to refift this attack alone, folicited the aid 
of the Rohilla ftates, who affenting to the requeft, came into Oude 

• He died in the year 1754.. 

•fr Ahmed Shah then fat on the throne of Delhi* 

% The Navaab of Furruckabad. 

§ In Mahometan ftates, the prince on the death of a fubje£r, becomes the heir of 
his property; which is often remitted to the family on the payment of a moderate fine. 

P 2 with 


with a large force. The Rohilla chiefs ultimately effeaed a ce£ 
fation of hoftility between the contending, parties ; and being 
chofen to decide on the claims preferred by Ghaze-ud-Dein, it 
was ftipulated, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah mould appropriate certain 
diftricls of the annual value of five lacks of rupees, to the ufe of 
the Imperial family. Nor was this engagement acceded to by 
Ghaze-ud-Dein, until Saud Ullah Khan had agreed to become 
fecurity for its performance.* — Saud Ullah Khan, in 1760, had 
accompanied the Rohilla army to the relief of Najeb Khan, one of 
the Rohilla chiefs, who. was inverted by a body of Mahrattas at 
Sookertal ; f and this appears to be the laft public aft which Saud 
Ullah performed. 

That you may view more comprehenfrvely the ntuation of the 
Rohillas at the period of Saud Ullah's death, it is neceffary to lay 
before you a brief defcription of thofe officers; who at that time 
held pofleffions in Rohilcund. 

Dhoondy Khan, in the partition of lands whkh were afligned 
to the chiefs, obtained the diftricls of the Biflbuly, Morababad> 
Chaundpore, and Sumbul.J He died previoufly to the Rohilla 
war, 1774, leaving three fons, the eldeft of whom, MohubbuHah 

* It was on this occafion, I believe, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah and Saud Ullah made 
an exchange of their turbans. This ceremony is obferved by the Mahometans in India 
as a pledge of fiicndfbip, and fometimes it is pradifed in the ratification of treaties. 

+ The name of a village, and ford of the Ganges. — See RcnnclTs Map. 

t Towns in Rohilcund,— See Rennet"* Map, 


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Khan, fucceeded to the largeft portion of his territory * Mullah 
Surdar Khan, to whom the diftrifts of Sunejah Kote,+ and fome 
other adjacent lands had been afligned, left fix fons ; amongft 
whom diflentions arifing about the divifion of the inheritance, the 
two eldeft, Ahmed Khan and Mahomet Khan, had recourfe to 
arms, for the decifion of the conteft. Ahmed Khan, fupported 
by Hafiz Rhamut, defeated his brother in an action, and took him 
prifoner4 Futtah Khan, one of the early affociates of Ali Ma* 
hornet, who had accumulated much wealth from the office § he 
had fo long filled, held the diftric*ts of Bandaum, Auflete, and 
Heftinpour.jj This officer, who died before the cxpulfion of the 
Rohillas, was fucceeded in the territorial property, by his eldeft 
ion Ahmed Khan.f The widow of Saud UUah Khan, held in 
high eftimation for a liberality of difpofition and pious deport- 
ment, redded in the town of Owlah, which had been by the con- 
fent of the chiefs, committed to her immediate charge. After the 

• This chief, confiding in an engagement made with the Vizier, in which it was 
ftipulaud mat he (hould not be molefte^ by the combined army, did not appear in arm« 
during the Rohilla War, 1743. But the Vizier violating the agreement, ftripped him 
of (lis territory and treafure. 

t Situate ai the diitance of forty-four computed miles to the weftward of BarciJy. 
Vide Rennell'l Map 

% Ahmed Khan commanded part of the Rohilla army in the war, 1774* 

§ Futuh KUnn held the o.hce of trcafurcr, a matter of the houfttold. 

I Towns i>ing in the weft and fauth quarters of Kohilcund 

f Ahmed K\an, the 'on ot Futtah Khan, r.itcr the defeat of the Rohillas in 1774, 
joined the army of Fyze Ullah, at Laldong, and retired with that chief to Rampour. 



death of Saud Ullah, when the common authority of the govern* 
ment had devolved on Hafiz Rhamut, it is not feen that the Ro- 
hilla arms were extenfively employed, or that any important revo- 
lution affected their ftatc. They had previoufly to the Vizier's inva- 
fion of Rohilcund, carried on a defultory war with the Mahrattas, 
and fcizcti on certain of their diftricts in the Duab, which conti- 
nued a fliort time in the Rohilla pofleffion. The Mahrattas who 
afterwards came in great force, expelled the Rohillas from the 
Duab, and laid wafte the eaftern quarter of Rohilcund. As a 
fhort hiftory of the life of Shujah-ud-Dowlah will be annexed 
in which the principal events of the Rohilla war are noticed, a 
difcuflion of them in this place becomes unneceflary. 

The form of government adopted by the Rohillas in India, 
of near affinity to that which cxifts in their native country, 
may be denominated feudal. The fucceffors of Daoud Khan 
poffefling (lender hereditary pretenftons, and furrounded by the 
men who had eflentially aided in the firft conqueft, held but 
a limited fway. Sundar Khan and Futtah Khan, two of the 
moll refpeclable of the Rohillas, never ceafed to oppofe the pro- 
grefs of Hafiz Rhamut, which was confpicuoufly directed to 
fovereign rule ; and by a zealous attachment to the party of 
Saud Ullah's widow, who was beloved by the people, they formed 
a moderate counterpoife to the encroaching power of that chief. 
Here it becomes my duty, whether as the compiler of Rohilla 
tracts, or a recorder of common fame, to briefly delineate the 


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character of Hafiz Rhamut. Born and reared to manhood in 
a country,* where its people are taught to confider a military as 
the only laudable profeffion, and that the fword conveys an ir- 
reproachable title to every acquifition, Hafiz Rhamut, consti- 
tutionally brave, became an enterprifing foldier. His govern- 
ment was founded on the common bafis of an active fyftem ; 
but flourilhed from the knowledge he poflefled of its refources. 
He feems to have maintained a general good faith in public 
tranfaclions, and though in the attainment of power he tram- 
pled on another's right, his genius and valor preferved the al- 
legiance, and perhaps the love of his people; who faw in him 
a mafter, whofe hand was equally prompt to indulgence or protec- 
tion. And here I am impelled to fay, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah 
alone, would never have dared Hafiz to the field. Hafiz Rhamut, 
like moft of the chiefs or princes of a country, where fuccefiion 
falls to the ftrongeft arm, was unfortunate in his family : Enayat 
Khan his eldeft fon, took up arms againft him, was defeated, and 
obliged to feek (helter with Shujah-ud-Dowlah, in whofe army he 
ferved at the Battle of Buxar.-f- Diflentions had arifen alfo amongft 
the defendants of the other Rohilla officers, which involved the 
country in general commotion, and on the arrival of the united 
forces of the Engliih and Shujah-ud-Dowlah in Rohilcund, the 

• Afglunifran. 

t He afterwards returned to Rohilcund, where he died before the laft Rohilla war. 



chiefs appeared to diead the encreafe of each others power, more 
than the invafion of an enemy. 

I will conclude this treatife, by obferving, that the Afghan 
conquerors of Rohilcund, were a rapacious, bold, and lawlcfs race 
of men j and it mould feem, that after they had eftablifhed a go- 
vernment in India, they adopted the more effeminate vices of the 
fouth, and became intriguing, deceitful, and treacherous. The 
Rohillas, efpecially the lower clafles, were, with but few exceptions, 
the only feci: of Mahometans in India who cxercifed the profeflion 
of hufbandry ; and their improvements of the various branches 
of agriculture, were amply recompenfed by the abundance, and 
fuperior quality of the productions of Rohilcund.* 

The actions of Najeb Khan, thofe efpecially which occupied 
the latter periods of his life, bearing a clofe relation to the hif- 
tory of Rohilcund, I have given them a feparate place in the 
treatife ; which as it reprefents him in a more confpicuous light, 
will afford me the fenfible pleafure of offering up a tribute of re- 
fpe£l and applaufe, to the memory of a brave liberal foldier, and a 
ftatefman of diftinguiflied ability. 

Najeb Khan, the nephew of the Bifliarut Khan, mentioned in 
the Rohilla fketches, came into Rohilcund during the adminiftration 
of Ali Mahomet, He was at firft, appointed to the charge of a 

* This country is faid to have yielded to the Rohillas, one million fterling, which is 
now reduced by the injudicious management of the Nair, to thirty, or at moft, forty 
thomand pounds, 


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very fmall party, not confifting, it is faid, of more than twelve 
horfe and foot. But his courage and activity foon brought him 
into the notice of Ali Mahomet, who entrufted him with a refpect- 
able military command, and procured for him in marriage the 
daughter of Dhoondy Khan. Whilft Ali Mahomet governed the 
Sirhend diftricts, Najeb Khan, who had followed his fortunes, ren- 
dered him an important fervice, in reducing to obedience a refractory 
Hindoo chief of that quarter. After the return of the Rohillas 
into Rohilcund, Dhoondy Khan beftowed the diftricts of Durana- 
ghur and Chaundpour, which had been granted to him in the ori- 
ginal divifion of Rohilcund, on Najeb Khan, who did not long 
confine himfelf within this narrow limit ; but croffing the Ganges, 
he made depredations on the territory of the Goojers,* as far 
as Ghous Ghur and Sarunpour.-j- 

On the death of Mahomet Shah,| Sufdar Jung avowedly an- 
nounced his hoftile difpofition to the court, which was then wholly 
directed by the Vizier Ghaze-ud-Dein, and prepared to lead an 
army to Dehli. Sufdar Jung prevailed on the Rohilla chief*, 
ever ready to draw the fword in the purfuit of plunder or con- 
queft, to join his army, which had advanced to the neighbourhood 

• A fcv3 of Hindoos, in upper India, of the fourth tribe, who equally exercife the 
profeflion of agriculture, and arms, 
f Vide Rennell's map. 

X Mahomet Shah died in A. D. 1747, and was fuccecded by his foa Ahmed Shah. 

Vol. I. 



of DehH • when an Hindoo* officer of the court, attached to the 
interefts of Ghazc-ud-Dein, induced Najcb Khan, by high of- 
fers of advancement, to fecede from the combination, and efpoufe 
the imperial caufe. — Alarmed at this defection, the refidue of the 
Rohilla troops, commanded by Hafiz Rhamut, retired into their 
own country. Najeb Khan was honourably received by Ghaze- 
ud-Dein, and being foon after promoted to the command of the 
army, he attacked Sufdar Jung, and compelled him to crofs the 
Ganges. On the fuccefsful conclufion of this campaign, in 
which the Rohilla was wounded, he received from the King the 
title of Najeb-ud-DowIah. 

Subsequently to this event, he moved with a ftrong body 
of troops into Rohilcund, where he eftabiifhed, in the diltri&s 
which formerly pertained to him, a fixed government ; and though 
he difclaimed a dependance on Hafiz Rhamut, he was confidered a 
political member of the Rohilla ftate. From a powerful fupport 
at court, and the diftinguifhed popularity of his character, Najeb- 
ud-Dowlah was feared and envied by Hafiz, who faw in the grow- 
ing influence of this chie f , a mortifying diminution of his own. A 
mutual enmity foon produced holtilities, which ultimately involved 
the whole bcxly of the Rohillas in a civil war. 

On the commencement of the diflcntions, Saud Ullah Khan, 
the nominal head of the Rohilla fldtes, had embraced the party 

• Named Devi Sing. 


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of Najeb-ud-Dowlah, which he was compelled to abandon by the 
fuperior power of Hafiz Rhamut, and his partifans, who pofieffing 
the refources of the country, could indulge or diftrefs him at 
pleafure. Najeb-ud-Dowlah, perceiving his inability to combat fo 
formidable an oppofition, retired from Rohiicund, and again at- 
tached himfelf to the fcrvice of the court. After his arrival in 
Dehli, he was either directed by the miniftry, or he folicited per- 
miflion, to reduce the Mahometan governor of Sarunpour,* who 
maintained a forcible poheffion of that quarter, and had refufed to 
render any account of the imperial portion of the revenue. The 
enemy retiring on the approach of Najeb-ud-Dowlah, the dis- 
tricts of Sarunpour and Ghous Ghur became an eafy acquifition. 
The activity and enterprize of this officer, who now commanded 
an approved body of foldiers, prompted him again to crofs the 
Ganges, and feize on his former pofleflions, to which he annexed 
the lands of Tillalabad, In the northern divifion of this new 
conqueft he founded the town Najebabad.-f- which in a Ihort 
time was filled with commodious and beautiful ftruflurcs, and be- 
came the centre of an extenfive commerce. At the dirtance of a 
mile from the town, he erected the fort of Najeb Ghur,| where 
the adjacent inhabitants, in the event of war, might depofit their 

• This town (lands on the northern part of the Duab, and is at this time held by 
Gholam fduder Khan, the grandfon of Najcb-ud-Dowlah. 

+ Situate in the northern divifions of Rohiicund. —Vide RennelL 
X This fort is alfo called Tatter Ghur. 

0^2 property, 

I2 4 


property, and find alfo a fecurity for their perfons. A want of 
more precife dates, which I have in vain fearched for, has thrown 
a confufion and perplexity on the preceding actions of Najeb-ud- 
Dovvlah : but it is now fcen that in the year 1757,* this officer was 
promoted to the ftation of Meer Buckfy, with the title of Amir-uL 
Omrah, at the inftance of Ghaze-ud-Dein ; who in 1753, having 
depofed and deprived of fight Ahmed Shah, raifed to the throne 
Alumguir Sani, the father of the prefent Emperor. 

When the Durannies entered-]- Hindoftan, in their fourth ex- 
pedition to participate in the wreck of the Empire, Najeb-ud- 
Dowlah, who was himfelf an Afghan, % and aware of the fuperior 
power of Ahmed Shah, attached himfelf without referve to the for- 
tunes of that prince ; diflblving the connection he had formed with 
Ghaze-ud-Dein, without hefitation, or an honorable regard for the 
favours he had received from the hand of that minifter. The re- 
turn of Ahmed Shah § into his own country, enabled the Mahrattas 
to exercife an alraoft undivided authority in the upper provinces of 

* Dow's Hiftory of Hindoftan. In the Khazanahee Omah, a Perfian book which 
treats curforily of the actions of the late Emperors of Hindoftan, it is faid, that Najeb- 
ud-Dowlah was appointed to this office by Ahmed Shah Duranny. I have followed 
Dow's Hiftory, from the probability that Najcb-ud-Dowlah would receive hiscommif- 
fion from the Court, under whofc authority he adted. 

+ In A. D. 1756. 

% The inhabitants of the fpace of territory, lying between the rirer Attoc and Per. 
fia, are called Afghans. 

§ Ahmed Shah returned into Afghaniftan, from his fourth Indian expedition, in the 
year 1757. 

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India. Najeb-ud Dowlah, the only Mahometan chief of power 
or ability, that was hoftile to their interelt, could not bring into 
the field an army of fufficient ftrength to oppofe their progiefs. 
He had been compelled to take port in the vicinity of Sookertal, 
a fort fituate on the weft fide of the Ganges,* where he was re- 
duced to fuch extremity, that had not the approach of the Rohil- 
las, and Shujah-ud-Dowlah, who were moving to his affiftancc, 
together with the rumour of the Duranny Ahmed Shah's march 
towards the Jumna, obliged the Mahrattas to retire, it is probable 
that Najeb-ud-Dowlah would have fallen under the fuperior force 
of their arms. 

In the fame year, but previoufly to this event, Ghaze-ud-Dein 
had cut off the Emperor.f and placed Shah Jehan the Second 
on the throne. The capital no longer contained any grand object 
of ambition. The power of its princes had been funk and tram- 
pled on, its treafures had been plundered, and its gates indis- 
criminately thrown open to Hindoos and Mahometans, according 
to the varying power of the day. The Mahrattas, who in their 
turn gave the law at Dehli, depofed the Shah Jehan, who had 
been exhibited to promote the views of Ghaze-ud Dein, and 
raifed to the throne, Jehan Bucht, the fon of Ali Gohur.^ After 
fome defultory actions, the Duranny Ahmed Shah, joined by 

* Now in ruins — See Rennell's Map. 
f Alumguir Sani. 

t One of the domeftic titles of the prefent Emperor. 



Najeb- ud-Dowlah and their Rohilla chiefs, attacked the Mahrattas, 
and defeated them, in a general engagement on the plains of Ban- 
delly,* in 1770 ; when Najeb-ud-Dowlah Angularly diftinguifhed 
himfclf, routing, it is faid, with his own troops, the divifion of the 
Mahratta army commanded by Duttah Pattelle,f who fell in the 
field. In the battle of Panifiett,^ the fortune of which was to 
decide the exigence of the Mahometan Empire in India, the Afghans 
were powerfully affifted by Najeb-ud-Dowlah, who during the 
period of an important intercom with them, evinced an invaded 
fidelity and fpirit. 

The overthrow of the Mahrattas and Ahmed Shah's return 
into his own country, contributed to give the affairs of the Empire 
a lefs diftrefbful afpect and and the abilities of N3jeb- ud-Dowlah, § 
who conducted the adminiftration of the young Prince, || again re- 
flected on the capital a glimmering ray of refpcc~t. A war now 
broke out between Najeb-ud-Dowlah and the Jatts, a powerful 
and war-like tribe of Hindoos, who in the general convulfion of 
the ftate, had feized on large tracts of territory, confining on the 

• In the neighbourhood of Dehli, at the paflage of the Jumna, called Bouraree 

t One of the Mahratta generals, and the uncte of Mhadgee Scindia, now fo well 
known in the annuls of India. 

% This decifive aclion was fought in February 1 761. 

§ Ghazc-ud-Dcin, in 1761, left Dehli, where he could no longer prefcrve an in- 
fluence, and where he was deielted for his cruelties and treachery. 
|| Tewcn Rucht. 


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weftern bank of the Jumna, and comprehending the ftrong holds 
of Deigh, Combere, Burtpoure, and th;: city of Agrah. The 
caufe of thefe hoftilities is not explained in any document that 
has reached my knowledge ; nor would perhaps throw any 
ftrong light on the hiftory of Najeb-ud-Dowlah. They arofe 
probably from the fource* which produced the various contefts 


• The feeds which produced the decay of the Moghul empire, and wh : ch at this 
day have ripened into luch malignancy, took a deep root during the rctgn of Auro ig- 
icbe ; who though one of the moft fagacious princes of the houfc of Timur, endangered 
the welfare of the Kate, and the feeurit of his fubjecls, by an injudicious impulfe ot do- 
mcltic afTcdion. He portioned amongft his fons, who were aftive and ambitious, the 
moft valuable provinces of the empire ; where acquiring an influence and rtrength, that 
cannot be held by an Afiatic fubjolt with frfcty to the monarch, they expeited with im- 
patience the event that was to determine their fchemcs and pretentions. On the death 
of Aurungzebc, the fons eagerly took up arms, and after deluging the c >untry with blood, 
the war was furcefsfully terminated by Bahaud.-r Shan, who n iy be faid to have mounted 
the throne of i>enli, from a mound of fraternal and kindrtd flai a hter — Not being en- 
dowed with experience, nor perhaps the genius of his father, the officers who governed 
the provinces, relaxed during his fhort reign in their allegiance, (hewing obedience to 
fuch orders, as might tend to promote their own views. The Mahrattas, whom Au- 
rungzebc had 'lesrlv fubducd by the active efforts of a thirty >cars war, defcended, at 
hi' death, from their mountains, and rapidly recovered the territories from which the/ 
had be~n expelled. Prcvioufly to the Perfian invafion, the fuluhdnrs of ( >ude and the 
Decan, having virtually cre£led their chief (hips into independent ft ites, commanded, 
without the controul of the court, lirgc armies, an J difpofed of the amount of t' re- 
venues, without rendering any account to the imperial tre-jfury. The Lmpirc, thus 
enfettded, and governed by ■ luxurious and Indolent prince, invited Nadir Shah to 
conqueft a d plunder. The river Attoc, the natural weftern buricr of India, on whofc 
bark * I. .hornet Shah ftiould hive ftooJ in perfbn, wr.s eroded by the Perfian! without 
oppolition ; and this inglorious prince, uuw uh e f the d'.idcm he wore uf ihs illuf- 
trious houfc which had given to the world a Babcr, an Akbar, and an Auruigzebc, 

fur k cndetcd 


and diforders of the times j when the ftrong arm, unreftrained 
by fear of punifliment, bore down the weaker ; when eftablifned 
rights were fubverted, and the private bonds of faith, with impu- 
nity, rent afunder. 

Sooridge Mull, the chief of the Jatts, commenced the cam- 
paign by attacking a Mahometan Jaguirdar,* the adherent of 
Najeb-ud-Dowlah. But the event of this war, which was fatal 
to Sooridge Mull.f did not confer any eflential advantage on 
Najeb-ud-Dowlah, though he gained an eafy and complete vic- 
tory over the enemy •. for the diftricls of Sarunpour had been 
over-run by the Sicqucs, againft whom he was obliged to march, 
and to forego the fruits of his fuccefs. 

In the autumn of the year 1764, Najcb-ud-Dowlah was befieged 
in Dehli, by a numerous army of Mahometans, Jatts, and Sicqucs, 
collected by Jewayir Sing, the fon of Sooridge Mull, who had form- 
ed fanguine hopes of crulhing the power of Najeb-ud-Dowlah, 
and revenging the death of his father. Ghaze-ud-Dein, who had 
brought with him a body of Patans from Furruckabad, alfo joined 

furrendered to them, without drawing his fword, the wealth and dominions of Hin- 
doftan. — A lubfequcnt train of diverfified ruin, moving with a rapidity not paralcllcd 
in the hiftory of nations, has now left no other veftige of the Moghul empire, than the 
name of king. 

* Moofah Khan, the Jaguirdar of Furrucknagur, adirtridl lying between Dehli and 

I Sooridge Mull was killed in December 1763, in an action fought on the plains of 
Ghaziabad, near the river Hindia, and about eighteen miles diftant from DcbH. 


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tbe confederate forces. After experiencing the diftreflcs of a clofe 
fiege of four months, heightened by a fcarcity of provifions and 
money, Najeb-ud-Dowlah prevailed on Mullar Row, the Mahratta 
officer, to detach his troops from the army of Jewayir Sing, who on 
the defcrtion of Co powerful an ally, raifed the fiege. The relief 
of Dehli was haftened alfo by the arrival of Ahmed Shah Du- 
ranny, at Sirhend, who was approaching with the avowed pur- 
pofe of affording fuccour to Najeb-ud-Dowlah. This chief had 
but a fliort time breathed from the embarraflments of the late com- 
bination, when he faw that his moft active exertions would be 
called forth to defend the territory he held on the weftern fide 
of the Ganges, from the ravages of the Sicques ; — a people con- 
fHtutionally adapted for carrying on the various lpecies of de- 
fultory war. 

Najeb-ud-Dowlah formed a junction in the year 1770, 
with the Mahratta. army, which came into Hindoftan under 
the command of Tuckejei Holcar and Mhadgee Scindia, whom 4 
according to my Rohilla papers, he had invited to effect the 
expulfion of the Sicques from the Duab. Najeb-ud-Dowlah, 
who had in the latter period of his life fallen into an infirm flatc 
of health, was fcized with a fevere illnefs in the Mahratta 
camp. Leaving behind him a part of his army under the com- 
mand of Zabilah Khan, his eldeft fon, he proceed :i towards 
Rohilcund ; but the diforder became fo violent, that he could mtf 
proceed farther than Happer, a fmall town in the Djab, where he 
Vol. L R dial * 


died,* The body was carried to Najebad, and interred in a tomb 
that had b*;cn erected by his order, in the vicinity of that town. 
Najcb-ud-Dowlah held in his own right, and in fief of the Em- 
pire, a tract of country extending from Panifrct eaftwards to 
Najebad j in the Duab, it was confined on the north, by Sarun- 
pour, and on the fouth, by the fuburbs of Dchli ; and in Rohil- 
cund, it reached from the mountains of Siringnaghur, to the dif- 
trift of Moradabad.f 

The revenue of this territory in its improved ftate, was calcu- 
lated at ioc lacks of rupees ; but it was reduced to feventy, it is 
faid, by the depredations of the Sicques, within a term of three 
years } nor would this amount have been preferved, had he not 
difplayed in his operation with thofe Marauders, a diftinguifhed 
flull in the alternate exercife of arms, and political addrefs. The 
death of Najeb Khan was lamented by the people whom he go- 
verned, and- his memory at this day is refpecled and beloved 
throughout the upper parts of India. He fupported the character 
of a gallant foldier ; he encouraged agriculture, and protected 
commerce ; and he was confidered as the only remaining chief of 
the Empire, capable of oppofing any barrier to the inroads of 
the Mahratta and Sicque nations. 

* His death happened in O&ober, 1770. 

t A principal town in Kohilcund, Handing on the banks of the Ramgunge. — See 
fctnnell's map. 


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A VARIETY of materials, fopplicd by 
the liberality and inveftigation of nty friends, has enabled me to 
write an abbreviated hiftory of the family and life of Shujah-udV 
Dowiah $ a prince who (imported a confpicuous character on the 
theatre of Hindoftan, and who, from his tran&clions with the 
Englifli nation in India, has founded an important epocha in their 
annals. Having fele&ed with caution, and unrefervedly com- 
mental on the documents that have come before mc, I firmly truft, 
that no marks of paflion, no defign to overcharge, or fupprefs 
facts, will appear in the relation. I am defirous alio of exhibiting 
a general outline of the a&ions of a prince, who flood much above 

R 2 mediocrity 


mediocrity in the eflimation of his fubjefts } that by a knowledge 
of his chara&er, and of their fentiments, fome fatisfaclory opinion* 
may be formed, of the difpofition and moral qualities of the natives 
of Hindoftan. 

Shujah-ud-Dowlah, the fon of Sufdar Jung, by a daughter 
of Saadut Khan, was born at Dchli, in the year 1729 of the Chrif- 
tian aera. Though a long line of iiruftrious anceftors be not the 
ftrongeft tenure of the dominions held by Indian princes, who 
are taught to confider fortune, and the power ol arras, as the 
primary aids in acquiring and maintaining empire ; yet a diflin- 
guifhed defcent imparts a luftre and weight to the other qualities 
of a fortunate leader, and he himfelf beholds it with oftentatious 
plcafurc. Hiftorical truth calls on me to do juftice to the claims 
of the family of Shujah-ud-DowIah, who, in Mr. Dow's Hiftory 
of Hindoftan, is denominated " The infamous fon, of a more in- 
famous Perfian pedlar."* The anceftors of Shujah-udDowlab, 
have for a long fpace of time been eftablifhed in Nifhabur, a town 
of Khorofan, where they held landed pofiefJions, and were claffed 
amongft the principal inhabitants of the province. 

Du ring my journey through Perfia, I had an opportunity of 

• Mr. Dow uniformly endeavours to throw an odhim on the family and chara&or 
of the late Vizier. When informed of the opprobrious terms ufed by that writer, in 
difcuffing the fubje& of his Domcftic Hiftory, Shujah-ud-DowIah attributed the lan- 
guage to the refentment of Mr. Dow, for having been refufod the faU-petre farm of 
the Allahabad diftr&s. 


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converting with fome of the inhabitants of Nifhabur, who bore 
indifputable teftimony to the ancient rank of the family of Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah. That this fact may be more fully exemplified, though 
it leads to prolixity, it is neceirary to mention, that Mirzah Naf- 
feer, the father of the maternal grand-fire* of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, 
came into Hindoftan in the beginning of the reign of Bahaudar 
Shah,f by whom l>e was appointed to an office of truft at Patna, 
where his tomb yet remains. Mirza Nafller bad two fons, the 
fecond of whom, Mahomet Aumeen, on being apprifed of the 
death of his father, left Perfia, and about the year 1708 vilitcd the 
court of Furruckfir. He was appointed by this prince, governor 
of the fort of Agrah ; and foon rifing to greater honours he ul- 
timately became the Viceroy of Oudc, by the title of Saredu* 
Khan Burhaan-ul-Mulck. By the reduction of this province, 
which had long been in a (late of rebellion, he acquired a con*- 
fpicuous military reputation, and was promoted to the office of 
Darogha Khas4 with the titular command of 7000 horic. 

About this time, Mahomet Muckeim, afterwards entitled 
Sufdar Jung, the nephew of Saadut Khan, came into India, and 
had the daughter of his uncle given to him in marriage ; of which 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah, was, I believe, the only male iflue. Sufdar 

* Saadut Khan, entitled Burhaan-ul-Mulck. 
f This Lmpcror commenced his reign in 17O7, and died in 1710. 
% Darogha Knas, an officer of nearly the lame dtfeription with the Matter of the 
King's Houfchold in England, 



Jung, who was active, and poflefTed ufeful abilities, became the 
deputy of Saadut Khan in the government of Oude. 

In the middle periods of Mahomet Shah's* reign, the Mah- 
rattas, at the inftigation, it is fuppofed, of the Nizam Ul Mulck.-j- 
who was then at variance with the court, entered the Emperor's 
dominions, and committed fevere devaluations ; but in attempting 
to penetrate into Oude, they were attacked, and after a /harp 
conflict, completely routed by the troops of Saadut Khan, who 
commanded in perfon. This officer afterwards joined the imperial 
army, which had been collected for the purpofe of expelling the 
enemy ; but on a pretence of fome dilguft, he left the camp and 
retired into Oude, without having feen the Emperor. It has been 
fuppofed that Saadut Khan, in conjunction with Nizam Ul Mulck, 
invited Nadir Shah into India, with the affurance of a powerful 
interiour afliftance, and an eafy conqueft of the Empire. This 
fuppofed fact, has been fubferibed to by Mr. Dow in his Hiftory 
of Htndoftan, with pofitive decilion in favour of its authenticity j 
and it is partially noticed in the Hiftory of Nadir Shah, by Mr. 
Frafer, who has treated his fubject with candour, and generally 
with perfpicuity. This writer aflerts, that Saadut Khan was en- 
gaged in a treacherous negotiation, which the difaffc&ed nobles of 
Dehli were faid to have maintained with the court of Perfia ; but 

• This Prince fucceeHcd to the throne in 1719, and died in 1747. 

♦ The Father of the prefent Nizam Ul Aluick. 


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here I muft obferve, though it diverts the immediate object of my 
rcfearch, that Frafer's alia t ion ftands unaccompanied by any de- 
tail of events, dcfcriptivc of the benefit which Saadut Khan derived 
from the invafion : nor has he quoted, in fupport of it, any fpe- 
cific authority. If a probable conclufion, indeed, is to be drawn, 
from Frafer's relation of the conduct of Saadut Khan, during the 
Perfian war, I would with little hefitation fay, that the Governor 
of Oude held no ftiare in the councils or favour of Nadir Shah, 
For had he obtained the protection of that Prince, to which he 
flood entitled from the fei vices imputed to him, it is not probable 
that fo large a (hare of the difafter of the Dchli army at Karnal, 
would have fallen on this officer. 

In a paflage of Frafer's hiftory, It is feen, I think, that Saadut 
Khan could not have held a confidential correfpondence with the 
Perfian, or experienced any portion of his indulgence. Frafer fays, 
" Before I relate .the treacherous correfpondence * carried on be- 
'» tween Nizam Saadut Ktun, and Nadir Shah, the invitation they 
" gave him to march towards Hindoftan, which was the princi- 
«« pal motive that encouraged him to undertake the expedition, I 
" mall," &c— And in the other part of the book it is mentioned, 
that on Nadir's approach towards the capital, Saadut Khan received 
orders to join the Dehli army, and that he had already eroded the 
Ganges, when he was directed to return to Oude. It had been 

• There is no future mention made of the correfpondence. 



refolved in the councils of Mahomet Shah, which were dift&cted 
and wavering, that the army fliould take the field under the com- 
mand of the Vizier : and that the Emperor, protected by the- 
forces of Saadut Khan, fliould remain at Dehli. This Omrah was 
required to undertake the charge, but an ill ftate of health at that 
time detained him in Oude. He arrived in February 1739, in the 
camp of Mahomet Shah, who receding from his former determina- 
tion, had joined the army. On the day of Saadut Khan's junc- 
tion * with the imperial forces, his camp was attacked and plan- 


dercd by a body of Perfian troops, who flew many of his attendants. 
Saadut Khan, on receiving information of the difafter, left the 
King's apartments, where he had been in waiting, and haftened to 
the afliftance of his party. Khan Dowrah, the imperial general, 
marched to the relief of Saadut Khan, and in a ihort time, moft 
of the imperial officers of Mahomet Shah, who commanded fepa- 
perate bodies, came into action. Nadir Shah, feeing the conteft 
become obftinatc and ferious, appeared himfelf at the head of hit 
troops, who then were irrefiftablc, and a complete victory was 
gained over the Dehli army, which fuffered a fevere lofs in men and 
officers. Khan Dowrah was mortally wounded : his cldeft fon, 
with many Omrahs, were flain ; and Saadut Khan fell into the 
hands of the enemy. In the army of Nadir it is faid, that 2500 
foldiers, with feven principal officers, were killed, and that 5000 

• The army was encamped at Karnal, about 100 miles to the weftward of Dehli. 


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meri were wounded. After the engagement, Nadir Shah ordered a 
tent to be pitched near his own quarters, for the accommodation 
of Saadut Khan, and two other Omrahs of Mahomet Shah. The 
baggage of thefe officers was Rationed on the outfide of the camp, 
together with their fervants, none of whom were permitted to at- 
tend them, nor were they allowed to make ufe of their own provi- 
fions. — Little farther mention is made of Saadut Khan by Mr. 
Frafer after this affair^ than that he was appointed to guard die 
city of Dehli, on the day of Nadir Shah's fir it entrance. This 
water likewife fays, that Nadir Shah, fummoning Saadut Khan 
before him on the 9th of March 1739, reprehended him in harfli 
language for being the caufe of impeding the collection of the 
impofts,* and that on the next day, Saadut Khan died, having 
been before weak and indifpofed. Mr. Frafer concludes his rela- 
tion of Saadut Khan, by obferving, that fome imagined he died 
through anger of the abufive reproach of Nadir ; and others arc 
of opinion, that jealoufy provoked him to take poifon.-f* 

Mr. Frafer' s relation of the conduft of Saadut Khan, the fpirit 
of which is ftri&ly adhered to, now awaits a difpaffionate decifion, 
which is to determine the probable truth of Saadut Khan's invita- 
tion of Nadir Shah into India. This author, who has unquestion- 
ably left us a valuable trad of Indian hiftory, in other paflages of 

• A tax laid by Nadir Shah on the inhabitant, of Debit. 

f It was believed at Dehli, that Saadut died of the effete of an ulcer in his leg. 

Vol. L S his 



his book, obferves, that the Perfian Prince fhewed marks of indul- 
gence and liberality to many of Mahomet Shah's Omrahs, but no- 
example is brought forward of his munificence, or even lenity, 
having been extended to Saadut Khan. On the contrary, it is feen, 
that Saadut Khan fuffcred feverely in the action of KarnaJ, and 
was fubfcquently treated with much rigour. 

Sufdar Jung,, who refided at Oude at the period of Saadut 
Khan's death, fucceeded to the Government j an appointment, ac- 
cording to the tradition of the family, conferred on him by Nadir 
Shah : yet I am induced to believe, from the liberal conduct of 
the Perfian to Mahomet Shah, that Sufdar Jung received the 
promotion at the hands of his own fovercign* Sufdar Jung, after 
the march of the Perfian army from Dchli, came to court, where* 
he obtained the office of Meer Atufti, or grand m after of the 

Ik the year 1746, Ahmed Shah, the Duranny, invaded Hin- 
doftan, and had advanced to Sirhend, where he was fuccefsfully op- 
pofed by tjie Dehli army, in which Suftiar Jung had a consider- 
able charge. Soon after the accefiion of Ahmed Shah* to the 
throne, Sufdar Jiing was advanced to the Vizarut, and his fon, 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah, to the command of the ordnance. But a 
ftrong party at court, compofed of Ghaze-ud-Dein,f Najeb-ud* 

• This prince commenced his reign in 1747. 
■f The grandfon of the great Nizam-ul-Mulcic 



Dowlah, the Rohilla chief, and Tameid Khan, a court eunuch, 
prevailing againit the intercft of Sufdar Jung, he was compelled 
to leave Dehli ; but not before he had cut off Janied Khan, whom 
he caufed to be aflaflinated in his own houfe, at an entertainment 
given to the eunuch. 

. Sufdar Jung, having colle&ed a large force, invaded the Im- 
perial territories, and laid fiege • to the capital, which was ciofeljr 
inverted for the fpace of fix months. He is accufed of commit- 
ting many enormities and wanton acts of violence during the fiege, 
particularly of cannonading the palace, the deftruclion of which 
could hot have facilitated the capture of the fort. The court of 
Dehli was compelled to accede to the terms of the rebel, who re- 
quired a formal grant of the provinces of Oude and Allahabad, for 
himfcff and his heirs.— Sufdar Jung died in the year 1754, during 
the reign of Altfmguif Sani, and was fucceeded ia the fubahdarry 
of Oude, by his fen Shujah-ud-Dowlah,-|- then about twenty-five 
years of age. As the defign of this work does not admit of any 
enlargement on the fubjea of Sufdar Jung, it will fuffice to fay. 
that his difpofition was fevere, often cruel $ and that his rapaciou* 
avarice threw uncommon odium on his name. 

To illuftratc the commencement of Shujah-ud-Dowlah's public 

. ' • ' v : 
• This event happened in 1753. 

t This domeftic name of this prince was Ti!Iah-ud-Dein Hyder. His father, who 
was in the Oude province during the birth of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, built, in the neigh- 
bourhood of Lucknow, the fort of Tillahabad, in commemoration of the event. 

S 2 life, 


life, it is neceflary to defcribc the fituation of the court of DehS 
at that period. Ghaze-ud-Dein, who had in 1753 depofed and 
deprived of fight Ahmed Shah, raifed to the throne Alumgurr 
Sani, whofe eldeft fon Aly-Ghohir, fearing the treacherous difpofi- 
tion and ill defigns of the minifter, fled from Dehli* This prince, 
accompanied by a fmall body of Mahrattas, levied for a few months, 
a fcanry contribution in the diftricls lying to the fouthward of the 
capital. But being loon involved in embarraffments from fo (len- 
der a provifion, he folicited the aid of the Rohilla, Najeb Khan, 
who refufing to engage in his caufe, he retired into the territory 
of Shujah-ud-Dowlah. The prince was treated for a certain time 
with hofpitality and ttfytSt at Oude, but could not obtain any 
military aid : and being at length civilly difinifled, he proceeded to 
Allahabad, which was then held by Mahomet Khuli-Khan, a na- 
tive of Perfia, and a coufin-german of Shujah-ud-Dowlah. Ma- 
homet Khuli, readily entering into the fchemes of the prince, 
which were directed at the reduction of the provinces of Bahar and 
Bengal, the joint forces eroded the Caramnafia, and were, after 
various fuccefles, defeated in 1761, by the Englifh troops, at Suan. 
The honourable and humane treatment which Aly-Ghohir expe- 
rienced during his refidence in the Englifh camp, created a jeaio'if 
in Caflum AU Khan, who from the recent tcftimony of the 
prince's hoftility to his interefts, and feeing alfo the Englifh 

• This event happened in 1758. 


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officer much attached to his perfon, exprefled a virulent diflike 
of the connexion. The prince accufed Caflum of fomenting 
thofc diflentions in his army, 'which ultimately produced a de- 
fperate mutiny ; when he probably would have fuffered much in- 
dignity, had he not been protected by the Englifh army. This 
event induced Ally-Ghohir to retire into the dominions of Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah, who received the fugitive king * in a manner expreffive 
of zealous attachment, and avowed himfclf the champion of the 
royal caufe. 

To illuftrate an event in the hiftory of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, we 
muft advert to the annals of a former period, and notice its origin. 
Sufdar Jung had appointed to the command of Allahabad, his ne- 
phew Mahomet Khuli Khan, who on the acceflion of Shujah-ud- 
Dowlah, feems to have wholly withdrawn himfelf from the autho- 
rity of the court of Oude. Aware of the popularity and military 
abilities of this officer, Shujah-ud-Dowlah lid not profecute any 
directly hoftile meafures againft Allahabad. During his expedition 
into Bahar, Mahomet Khuli had placed the government of his pof- 
feffions in the hands of Nudjef Khan ; the chief, who at a future 
period became fo confpicuous in the upper parts of India. Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah, embracing the favourable occafion of Mahomet Khufi's 
abfencc, advanced with a fmall army towards the limits of Allaha- 

* At this period. Ali-Ghohir bad nominally fucccedcd to the Empire, by the title 
of Shah Alum. His father died in 1 760. 



bid. He maintained an amicable intercou.fe with Nudjef Khan, 
whom he amufcd by folemn proteftations of attachment to the wel- 
fare of Mahomet Khuli j and reprefcnted, that the Duranny in- 
vafion had induced him to come into that quarter to folicit an afy- 
lum for his family in the fort of Allahabad, as his own country 
poflefied no place of equal fafety. Nudjef Khan would not liften • 
to the requeft, but waited the infttu&ions of Mahomet Khuli, 
who directed, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah's family fhould be admit- 
ted into the fortrefs with a certain number of domeftic guards. It 
is faid, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah introduced into the female equipages 
a body of armed men, who rufhed on the garrifon, and took the 
fort without any effufion of blood. This capture, which happened 
about the year 1761, rendered the affairs of Mahomet Khuli def- 
perate, and obliged him to become a dependant on the bounty of 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah j who, in the courfe of a few months, threw 
him, on a charge of ftate crimes, into prifon. Mahomet Khuli, 
from his valour and liberality, was held in high eftimation in the 
Oude army, which in loud murmurs, and in companions not fa- 
vourable to their Prince, warmly lamented his misfortunes. Nudjef 
Khan, on the capture of Allahabad, had entered into the fervice of 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah, and exerted himfelf with a zeal that endan* 
gercd his own fafety, to procure the releafe of Mahomet Khuli ;* 


• Mahomet Khuli was cut off at the fort of Tiflalabad : — this example difclofed 
an evil, which is ufually/een to pervade Allatic dates. A defpotic Prince cannot always 


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but this officer had become an object of fuch dread at the court of 
Oude, from the rumours inceflantly circulated in his favor, that 
the fears of Shujah-ud-Dowlah were not allayed until the deftruc- 
tion of his prifoner had been compleated by afTaffination. Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah obtained from the King the appointment of Vizier 
and being now poiTefled of a numerous army, and the imperial 
perfon, he might juftly be confidered the raoft powerful chief in, 

In the year 1763, the war broke out between the Englifh and 
Caffum Ali Khan, which after a diverfified train of fuccefs and 
difafters, terminated in CalTum's expulfion from the province of 
Bengal, and his retreat, in the latter end of the fame year, with 

impart fo full a force to his fyftctn of tyranny, as to (hapc to the fpirit of its edicts, the 
minds and language of his fubjc&s. Without the compendious favage aid of the dagger, 
the road to conqueft and empire, would not perhaps have been fo widely ripened to a 
Timur, a Nadir Shah, or, in our day, to a Hyder Ali. When Shujah-ud-Dowlah 
had formed the rcfolution of cutting off Mahomet Khuli, he had not yet confulidatei 
the firuclure of his government. The officers of his army, I'crfians, Moghub, 01 Afg- 
hans, were daring turbulent men, and had large claims of pay. They faw in Maho- 
met Khuli, a brave foldier, of diftinguifhed birth, of liberal and popular manners. 
They had witneflfed the former treachery of Shujah-ud-Dowlah to him, and fufpected 
his future purpofes. Though this Prince dreaded the formidable qualities of Mahomet 
Khuli, he equally dreaded a formal indulgence of his wiflies. Had he Lmmoned this 
officer to a trial, or publickly orJcrcd his death, the danger of a revolution would have 
been incurred : for the low (rate of his treafury, a long arrest*, and an inherent defi- 
ciency of military genius in the Prince, had flrongly operated in dimittUhiflg the'fu* 
bordination of the army. But fuch was the barbarous neceffity of the mcafurc, the mi- 
ferable policy of a demi-armed defpot, that he was compelled to maintain the fifcry of 
his perfon, and the government of his country,, by the fecret (Lb of a poignard. 



the remains of his troops, and a large treafury, into the dominions 
of Shujah-ud-Dowlah. The Bengal Government, which had been 
long duped by the evafive replies of the Vizier to the repeated 
rcmonftrancc of his fuccouring their enemy, difcovered that he had 
drawn his army to Benares, and was preparing to invade Bahar, in 
conjunction with Caflum Ali. A letter which he addrcflcd to the 
government of Bengal, peremptorily avowed his intentions. In 
arrogant and contemptuous language he fays, " that the Englifh, 
" abufing the favours conferred on them by the Emperors of Hin- 
" doftan, have fomented disturbances in the empire ; and that in- 
" ftead of limiting their exertions to trade, as became merchants, 
" they interfered in the imperial afFairs, exalting and depofing at plea- 
" fure, the fervants of the crown. He calls upon them to juftify 
«« their anions, and to withdraw forthwith, ali their people from 
w the King's dominions j and in the event of difobedience, threatens 
•« them with the royal difpleafure, which he denominated The type of 
" God's -wrath" Though Shujah-ud- Dowlah had buoyed up Caflum 
Ali with the promife of reinftating him in the provinces, we cannot 
eafily believe, that the man who has been recently feen betraying 
and cutting off his kinfman, who held both the claims of friendfhip 
and affinity, would without a manifeft and great advantage, incur the 
rifle of fortune and life, in the caufe of a ftranger. Had the arms 
of the Vizier prevailed in the courfe of the war, the general tenor of 
his actions fupports a fair conjecture, that he would without a 
fcruple have annexed the conquered country to his own dominions. 


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In the courfe of the year 1764, intelligence was received at 
Calcutta, that the forces of the Vizier and Cafliim All, with fome 
few troops attached to the King, had penetrated into the vicinity of 
Patna ; whither our troops, on the approach of the combined army, 
had precipitately retired. The enemy being afterwards repulfed in 
aflaulting the European trenches, retreated towards the river Soane, 
where the Vizier made pacific advances to the Englifli officer, who 
had been authorized to negociate, but pointedly directed to demand, 
in the preliminary articles the furrender of Sombro, and the Euro- 
pean deferters.* The purpofe of the Vizier, in the defire he had 
fhewn of obtaining a peace, was only to procure a ceflation of 
hoftility, that he might recruit his army. It has been even faid, 
that he endeavoured to bring over to his caufe Jaffier Ali Khan, 
whom the Englifli, on the expulfion of Caflum, had a fecond time 
advanced to the government of the provinces. The Vizier, at a 
future period, did not difavow this fuppofed correfpondence, which 
appears to have been conducted on the part of Meer Jaffier, by 
Nundocomar.f who gave the Vizier an afliirance of his matter's in- 
clination to form a feparate treaty. Shujah-ud-Dowlah had derived 
an eflcntial advantage from the fears of Caffum Ali, now ferioufly 
alarmed by the repulfc at Patna j and having firft inveigled away 
his European and beft native troops, he ftripped him of the largeft 

• About two hundred private Europeans had deferred to the Vizier. 
+ The perfoo who (offered death at Calcutta, by a fentence of the Supreme Court 
for forgery. 

Vol. I. T part 


part of his treafure, and military ftores. The drift of the Vizier's 
negociations becoming notorioufly manifcft, it was refolved that 
the Englifh ar my fhould move towards his camp, and decide the 
conteft in the field ; which after a gallant action of five hours, 
gave a complete victory to the Englifh .* 

The defeat at Buxar produced obftinate difficulties to the po- 
litical and military career of the Vizier, who on that event wai 
deferred by all his allies. Shall Alum, in a condition ill fuited to 
the title he bore, fought an afylum in the Englifh camp, and loudly 
accufed Shujah-ud-Dowlah of having forced the royal authority 
into becoming an instrument of his ambition, and a fanction of his 
hoftile defigns againft the Englifh. This was the fecond time that 
the unfortunate Shah Alum had taken refuge in an Englifh army. 
Here let me direct: the view of the reader to the revolutions, which 
within no wide compafc of time, have affected the empire of Hin- 
doftan : where at the clofe he will behold, with an awe and wonder 
that mufl humble the proudeft of us to the dufr, the illuftrious 
ho ufe af Timur fliaken to its foundation. 

In the reign of Aurungzebe,f it may, without any violation of 
truth, be faid, that Hindoftan, whether for its wealth, magnitude, 

• The Engliflj array confifted of 857 Europeans, and 6115 native troop*, of which, 
-101 Europeans, and 773 fepoys, were killed and wounded. The army of Shujah-ud- 
Dowlah was computed at 40,000 men, 2000 of whom it is (aid were (lain in battle. 
The artillery taken by the Englifh in the field, and in the purfuit of the enemy, 
amounted to 133 pieces of various fizes. 

f This prince died in J707, having reigned near fifty years. 


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or military refource, was the mod diftinguifhcd empire in the 
Afiatic world. It mud alfo be noticed, that the EnglUh, at that 
period, were not known beyond the fea coafts of India, where they 
occupied, under various reftrictions, the profeffion of merchants. 
Behold the fcene prefented in our day, of the feeble princes of 
Dehli, where a near fuccefibr of the great Aurungzebe, impelled 
by the deftruction of his fortunes, is fcen foliating, in a country 
fo lately under the dominion of his ancestors, maintenance and 
protection from an Englifli fubject-* 

The Vizier, who had now feverely felt the fuperiority of the 
Englifh arms, (hewed a ferious define of peace, but ftill refufed to 
fubmit to the terms of the preliminary article, in the manner 
required by the Bengal Government. He refufed to deliver dp 
Caflum Ali, and Sambro, but promifed to employ fome convenient 
inftrument in deftroying the one, and to expel the other from his 
territories. This mods of qualifying the article, not being acceded 
to, Colonel Munro marched with the army to Benares. The 
defertion of a party of Europeans, and the retreat of our troops 
towards Patna, on his entering the Bahar province, had given him 
languine hope of fuccefs, which were wholly diffipated by the 
defeat at Buxar : and from that period, he began to model his 
army on a plan not before pracYifed by the princes of India The 

* This ftuft ha* been again exemplified in the perfon of Schamdhar Shah, the eldeft 
fon of Shah Alum ; who, by the interpolation of the Bengal Government, receives a 
pennon of three lacks of rupees out of the Oude revenue. 

T 2 author* 


author* of a valuable manufcript, which has largely aided this 
compilation, fays, that the a?ra of the real confequencc and power 
of the Vizier may be dated from the battle of Buxar. Conformably 
to an ufage not unfrequent in Hindoftan, this prince had collected 
a larger army than the fources of his country could maintain j and 
even where the funds are competent, military payments are ever 
distributed in the native armies with a griping hand j though the 
moft pernicious effects are often produced by this fallacious fyftem. 
The ftrength of the Vizier's army, confifting of cavalry, and a 
cumbrous body of artillery, was compofed of many nations and 
tribes, but chiefly of Moghuls. Thefe men, naturally violent and 
licentious, ill-brooked the failure of payment, and on every demand 
of arrears, either caufed dangerous tumults, or forced expedients 
that were injurious to the'eivil government of his country. Orders 
of payment were granted on the farmers, or managers of diftricts, 
on whom thefe foldiers lived at difcretion, until the amount was 
difcharged ; giving a loofc to every fpecics of difordcr, and barely 
leaving a fum fufHcient for fupplying the other exigencies of the 
ftate. But the defeat he fuftained at Buxar, relieved the Vizier 
from his embarraflments : for the Moghul cavalry, without making 
one fpirited effort to fuftain the battle, were the firft of his troops 
that left the field ; and confeious it fliould feem of their pufilanimous 
conduct, they never returned to his ftandard. 

• Colonel Polier; 

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The Englifh army advanced from Benares to invert Chunar- 
Ghur ; but after making two unfuccefsful aflaults it returned to 
Benares. Bulwunt Sing, the Hindoo Chief of the province, had 
accompanied the Vizier in the campaign againft the Englifh, with 
a party of troops, which were ftationed on the north fide of the 
Ganges, oppofitc to the Buxar plain. After the battle, he with- 
drew himfelf from the Vizier, and having effected an accommoda- 
tion with Colonel Munro, he joined the Englifh army : but, 
alarmed at the repulfe of Chunar-Ghur, and the Vizier's approach, 
he fuddenly deferted Benares, and his new connexion. 

Colonel Munro, religning about this period* the command 
of the army, was fucceeded by Major Fletcher, who immediately- 
marched out of Benares, and purfucd the Vizier, who had already 
inverted the town as far as Juanpour. He formed the army into 
two divifions, one of which, under Major. Stibbert, reduced the 
fort of Chunar-Ghur, and afterwards penetrated into the interior 
parts of the Vizier's country ; — the other divifion he led liimfelf . 
into the Allahabad diftrias, which were fubjeaed. The Vizier, 
not able to oppofe the fuccefs of thefe parties, called in a body of 
Mahrattas, who entered his country on the fide of Corah,f and 
were defeated by the Englifh army, then commanded by General 
CarnacJ The Mahrattas were attacked a fecond time by this^ 
- . • ■ -• : 

• This occurrence happened in the beginning of the year 1765. 

f This diftri<3, which is fituatcd in the Allahabad territory, is bordered by the Jumna, 

J In May, 1765. 



officer, at Ackbarpour * and driven from their ground ; though not 
before they had plundered a great part of the European baggage. 
They were foon obliged to crofs the Jumna, which they paiTed at 
the ford of Culpec, where they made a ftand ; but after a fhort 
action were wholly difperfed. The Vizier had invited the Mahrat- 
tas into Oude, without making any provifion for the payment of 
their fubfidy ; and, fearful that this failure might prompt them to 
commit an outrage on his perfon, or create tumults in his army, he 
never joined their party. 

The affairs of the Vizier had now fallen to a low ebb ; he had 
loft the greater part of his country, his army was thinned by defer- 
tions, and he was without a treafury, or an ally. After the battle 
of Buxar.f full of alarms and defpondency, he had retired into Ro- 
hilcund, where he folicited an afylum for his family, and the aflift- 
ance of the Rohillas, Hafiz Rhamut received him with hofpi- 
tality, and the refpeft due to his rank : he afforded him every do- 
meftic conveniency, but earneftly advifed a peace with the Englifh, 
as the certain medium of retrieving the defolated ftates of his for- 
tunes. Deftitute of every refource for maintaining a war, and di£. 

• In May or June, 1765. 

+ Juftice to a character, already diftinguifhed in Hindoftan for liberality and valour, 
calls on me to note in this place, the name of Ahmed Khan BungliQi, the Navaub of 
Furruckabad ; who when urged by Colonel Munro, after the action of Buxar, to affift 
in completing the overthrow of Shujah-ud-Oowlab, who had ever been the avowed 
enemy of bis houic, laid that bis honour forbid him to carry arms againft the van- 
cjuiflicd , \ 


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mayed by ill fortune, the Vizier at length refolved to throw himfclf 
unrelervedly on the clemency of the Englifti. He difpatched Mon- 
fieur Gentil, a French gentleman, to the Englifh camp,* to obtain 
an aftual knowledge of the difpofition of his enemies. This 
agent delivered to the commanding officer, an addrefs from the 
Vizier, couched in a tenor far different from his former letters. 
He obferved. that the animoftties which had arifen between them, 
mud be attributed to the difpenfations of Providence : that of this 
he had now manifeft witnefs by the events which had been produced, 
and that he was determined to commit himielf to the juftice of the 
illuftrious Englifli chiefs, conftant and unchangeable in their friend- 
fliip. In the conclufion, written by himfelf, he fays, " I regard not 
" wealth, nor the rule of dominion : your friendfliip and favour are 
" all I defire. I will, pleafe God, foon be with you } when you- 
" may do that for me, which you may think belt." Lord Give, 
who at this time had arrived in Bengal, was empowered by the Go-* 
vernment, in conjunction with General Carnac, to negotiate with 
the Vizier : and having met him at Allahabad, in the month of 
Auguft, 1765, a treaty of peace was finally concluded. The fiib- 
ftance was, — That there mould be a perpetual treaty of peace be- 
tween the contracting parties. — That in the event of the dominions, 
of either being invaded, a military aid (hould be furnifhed by the 


• Nudjef Khan was employed alfqby the Vizier on this occafion to negotiate with 
the Engl tin ; but that officer was more ferioufly engaged in accoaipltfbJpg his own 
purpofes, than in procuring terms far hi; matter. 




other. — That the Vizier is not to receive Caflum Ali, Sombro, or 
any Englifh deferters into his fcrvice. — That Corah and Allahabad 
be ceded to the King. — That Bulwunt Sing be continued in 
the zemindary of Benares, which is to be confidered a fief of the 
Subahdary of Oude : — And that Chunar-Ghur, a fort in that 
province, be given up to the Englifh. That no duties be collected 
on the merchandize of the Company, in any part of the country of 
the Vizier. That all fuch fubjefts or relations of the Vizier, who 
may have aflifted the Englifh during the late war, be paidoned; — 
and, That this treaty remain in force with the defendants of 
the Vizier. 

Thus was Shujah-ud-Dowlah reftored to the pofleffion of his 
dominions by the victorious Englifh, after having been reduced by 
their arms to the verge of ruin. The terms granted to him breathe 
a liberal heroic fpirit, and confpicuoufly diftinguithed the mind 
from which they fprang. The memory of the Indian hero, ill 
merits the ftain impreffed on it by Mr. Dow, who fays, " Shujah- 
ud-Dowlah, was ftill pofleffed of wealth, and the virtue of the con- 
" querors, was by no means proof againft temptation." — But it 
** is a fad fupportcd by the purefl authority, that Lord Clivc 
obftinately rejected every offer of gratuity, made to him by the 
Vizier. Exclufive* of the articles of the treaty, a private agree- 

• The aSt of reinftating the Vizier in his dominion, not only contributed to exalt 
the chara&cr of the Britiih nation, but was ftridUy confonant to the principles of found 


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mcnt, entered into by the contracting parties, ftipulated, on the 
part of the Vizier, a payment of fifty lacks of rupees to the Eng- 
lifh Government, for defraying the expences of the war ; as the 
Englifh at this period, did not oftcnfibly interfere in the admini- 
ftration of the Bengal provincial affairs j which on the death of 
Meer Jaffier had devolved on his fon Nuzzum-ud-Dowlah. 

The treaty entered into with Shujah-ud-Dowlah, was executed 
by this prince, on one part, and on the other by the fubahdar of 

policy. It evinces alfo a forcfight which is gricvoufly verified in the events of fuc- 
cceding times. Lord Clive, in his letter to the Company, fays, " Our rcftoring to 
" Shujah-ud-Dowlah, the whole of his dominions, proceeds more from the defirc of 
** not extending the Company's territorial pofleflions, than the generous policy of at- 
" taching him for ever to our interefts by gratitude ; though this has been the apparent, 
" and is by many thought to be the real motive. Had we ambitioufly attempted to 
a retain the conquered country, experience would foon have proved the impradticabr- 
" lity of fuch a plan. The eftablifliment of an incrcafed army muft have been added 
" to your lift, and more chiefships appointed. Acts of oppreflion and innumerable 
' " abufes would have been committed, which, at fuch a diftance from the prcfidency, 
«• could neither have been prevented, or remedied ; and muft infallibly have laid the 
«* foundation of another war. Our old privileges and poffeflions would have been en- 
«* dangered by every fupply we might have been tempted to afford in fupport of the 
" new, and the natives muft have finally triumphed in our inability to futtain the 
*< weight of our own ambition." — In India, it is to be noted, donations are prefented 
to men of power, or thofc who are fuppofed to influence them, for perfonal protection, 
and for the fecurity or acquifition of property. A rejected offer is the -cftablifhed 
ilgnal of difpleafure, and either indicates its inefficiency, or that fome more adequate 
reward has been already preferred. Shujah-ud-Dowlah was at firft alarmed at the con- 
duct Of Lord Clive, whofe refufal of any gift was confirmed into a difpofition inimical 
to his interefts. But this prince beheld the foldier's magnanimity with admiration, 
when at the conclufion of the treaty, he received, in token of fricndlhip, a ring ©t 
moderate value. 

Vol. I. U Bengal, 


Bengal, m conjunction with Lord Clive : but that all future cm* 
barraflments might be obviated, a delegated power, authorizing the 
Englifli India Company to manage and controul the revenues or 
the provinces, was obtained from the king. It was alfo ftipulated, 
that in confideration of the appointment of Nuzzum-ud-Dowlah 
to the military and executive government of the provinces, and his 
grant* of the civil jurifdittion to the Englifli, the fum of twenty- 
frx lacks of rupees -)- fhould be annually paid to the king, out of 
the revenues of Bengal. The diftricls of Allahabad and Corah 
were at the fame time difmembered from the Vizier's territory, and 
ceded to Shah Alum, that he might be enabled to maintain, without 
a reftraint, the dignity of his ftation. 

Though he amply experienced the liberality of the Englifli, 
the Vizier had fuffered important injuries during the war. From 
"the revenue of Oude, which with certain diftri&s of Allahabad, 
was computed at one hundred and fixty lacks of rupees, the* 
ceflion of Corah and Allahabad, had dedufted thirty- fix lacks ; 
and the ravages of his own army, with the incurfions of our 
troops, who had proceeded as far as Lucknow, caufed a farther 
decreafe of the general produce of his country. — In acknowledge- 
ment for the ceflion which had been made, Shah Ullum in— 

* It is termed the Dewany. 

+ From this amount, a pcnfion of rwo lacks of rupees was beflowed, at the inte*- 
eeffion of the Englifli, on Nudjef Khan, who was thought to have rendered them fer- 
ries during the latter part of the Oudc war. 


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vefted the Vizier with the hereditary pofleffion of the province of 

This prince was now feen to apply with a vigilant afliduity to 
the adminiftration of his affairs. The revenue department wa» 
committed to the charge of men of ability and credit, who in 
the fpace of a few years enabled him to difcharge a large debt, 
and to accumulate a fund for the fnpply of public exigencies. 

On his arrival at Oude, after the Allahabad treaty, he called 
together, it is faid, his principal officers, and making known to 
them the engagements he had made with the Englifli, he defired 
their aid in performing the obligation. Through this mode of 
requifition, which is often praclifed by the princes of India in time 
of need, the Vizier obtained fome aid j though far fhort of his 
neceflities. His Begum, feeing the difficulties that furrounded 
him, and the diftrefled ftate of his mind, diverted herfelf of the 
jewels, and other valuable ornaments (he pofleffed, and entreated 
that the amount might be applied to the arrangement of his affairs. 
It is mentioned, that Shujah-ud-Dowlah was fo warmly affected by 
this mark of the Begum's attachment, which wholly removed his 
embarraflment, that he folemnly fworc, he would never, while he 
rcfided in the fame place, abfent himfelf from her apartment after 
a certain hour of the night j and that he would thenceforth ever 
' efteem her his faithful friend and counfellor. Nor does it appear 
that he deviated from the vow he made to the Begum, who be- 

U z came 


came from that day the repofitory of his treafure, and all his fecret 


The defeat at Buxar y having relieved the Vizier from the 
maintenance of a turbulent crowd of cavalry, he began to intro- 
duce in his army, a fyftem of order and regular payment. He had 
km that the excellency of the European troops confifted in difci- 
pline, the quality of their arms, and the Ikilful management of 
artillery. He therefore made ftrenuous and unceafing efforts in 
forming a body of infantry, with its requifite eftabli foment of 
cannon, after the European manner. The undertaking was ar- 
duous, and fuch as few Afiatic princes could have executed. But 
the genius, activity, and perfeverance of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, fur- 
mounted the various obftacles, which rooted prejudice and con- 
stitutional habit had raifed to oppofe him. Under the direction of 
fome Frenchmen whom he had invited into, his fervice, an arfcnal 
was founded at Fyzeabad, where guns, mufquets and (hot, with 
other military ftores, were fabricated with fkill and expedition. — 
From this new magazine, about ten battalions of infantry, and a 
fmall train of artillery, were equipped. Though this body was 
formed at the expence of large fums, and much labour, fuch ju- 
dicious arrangements had been adopted for the government of his 
country, that fufHcient funds were created to defray the charge, 
and to produce a refpeclable treafury. The cavalry, which at the 
battle of Buxar amounted to 39*000, appears at this time to have 


ken reduced to little more than 5,000 men. The Vizier derived 
an eflential benefit from the Englifh garrifon, that was ftationed 
at Allahabad, which keeping that quarter in awe, relieved him from 
the ncceffary expence of protecting a frontier country. 

In the year 1768, Shujah-ud-Dowlah faw himfelf in the pof- 
ftflion of a well appointed army, a treafury competent to its 
charge, and a flourilhing productive territory. This quick pro- 
grefs, in endeavouring to diflblve the fubordinate connexion into 
which he had been forced, and to extend his power, attracted the 
notice of Colonel Smith, who was ftationed at Allahabad. — This 
officer reprefented the conduct of Oude, as dangerous to the in- 
tereft of the nation, and demanding an immediate interpofition. 
The council, roufed by this information, deputed Meflrs. Cartieiv 
Ruflell, and Colonel Smith, to the Vizier, to expoftulatc on the 
tendency of his military preparations ; which indicated, they ob- 
jferved, a want of confidence in their friendlhip and fupport. The 
deputies held a conference with the Vizier at Benares, in the 
month of November, 1768 > when after much acrimonious alter- 
cation, he contented, though with a deep mortification and re- 
luctance, to limit the ftrength of his troops to the following, 
number and denomination ^ 



Cavalry, — — — 10,000 

Ten battalions of fepoys, including officers of io,cod 

every rank, — — 

The Nujjeeb regiment of matchlock-men, 5,000 

A corps of artillery, not to exceed — 500 
Irregulars, not to be clothed, difciplined, or 
armed, after the manner of the Englifh fepoys, 

or Nujjeeb regiment, — — 9,500 


Tire Vizier confidered this reftriction as no lefs unjuft, than it 
was difgraccful to him ; but, incapable of avowedly oppofing the re- 
quifition of fuch powerful and jealous allies, he refolved to execute 
his plans with more addrefs, though without any efiential deviation 
"from the object that biafled all his actions : and it is a well known 
fact, that he did not, in confcqucnce of the treaty of Benares, 
difmifs one foldier from his fcrvice. His proceedings were con- 
ducted with caution, and he was fuccefsful in procuring, amongft 
the Englifh themfelves, zealous and able advocates ; but the Vizier 
faw that his ambition and fchemes of aggrandifemcnt, would ever 
be encountered by the jealoufy of the Englifh, whom he now beheld 
with miftruft and refentment ; and knowing the French were the 
common enemy of our nation, the Vizier held out many induce- 
ments to engage their aflirtance. 



In the year 1772, a Mahratta army, commanded by the chiefs, 
Scindia, Halcar, and Hurry Punt, penetrating into Hindoftan,. 
laid wafte the Duab, and poflefled themfelvc* of the Etajoh dis- 
tricts, together with all the territory of Ahmed Khan Bungilh, ex- 
cept the town and environs of Furruckabad. An invafion fo for- 
midable had alarmed the Rohilla chiefs, who, on the approach of 
the Mahrattas, folicited the Vizier to procure the aid of an Englifli 
brigade ; for which they offered the funi of forty lacks of rupees. 
The Vizier, anxious for the fafety of his own country, on the con- 
fines of which the enemy were already encamped, accepted, with- 
out hefitation, a propofal that would enable him to defray the ex- 
penecs of a body 0/ troops, from which he himfelf would derive 
an efiential benefit j and he, ibme time in the year 1772, applied 
to the Englifli Government, for a fupply of forces to defend his 
dominions againft the threatened invafion of the Mahrattas. Con- 
formably to this requifition, an Englifh brigade proceeded to Be- 
nares, whence a detachment of three native battalions, joined by 
the forces of the Vizier, marched to the frontiers of Rohilcund ; 
the interiour parts of which the Mahrattas were then laying waftc 
The commencement of the periodical rains, and the near approach 
of the combined army, obliged them to rapidly crofs the Ganges. 
The Mahrattas, in the following year,* again entered Rohilcund 
where they committed much devaftation ; but they retreated om 

• »77* 



the appearance of the Vizier's army, which had been reinforced by 
a complete Englifh brigade. 

On the night previoufly to the arrival of the combined forces 
in the vicinity of the Mahratta encampment, which was formed 
on the weft fide of the Ganges, a large body of their cavalry eroded 
the river, and, difperfing the Rohilla troops, they carried off Ah- 
med Khan, one of the principal officers. The brigade reached the 
place of this action about break of day, when they obferved the 
Mahrattas palling the river,* then fordable, with precipitation ; 
and a diftant cannonade enfued, in which the enemy loft a few 
men and horfes : but they foon retired from that quarter, nor have 
they fince appeared in arms on the eaft fide of the Ganges. 

The Vizier, on the retreat of the enemy, demanded the fum 
of forty lacks of rupees from Hafiz Rhamut Khan, who being at 
this time the fuperiour officer of the Rohilla forces, and the con- 
ductor of their political meafures, was urged to fulfil the engage- 
ment. Hafiz reprefented, that the Rohillas had not received the 
ftipulatcd aid, which, if fumilhed in the preceding year, might 
have prevented the injuries done by the enemy ; and that the pre- 
fent campaign had been maintained by the Rohilla troops : yet he 
faid, that though the other chiefs mould withhold their quota of 
the claimed amount, he would difcharge his proportion to the ex- 
tent of his ability. 

• At Ramgaut, a ford of the Ganges in Rohilcund.— Vide RenneU's map. 


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The ambitious difpofition of the Vi2icr, and the difregard he 
had hitherto (hewn to the dictates of juftice, or honour, afford no 
llender authority for fuppofing that he fecretly rejoiced at the re- 
fufal of the Rohillas to execute the whole tenor of their agreement. 
In promoting and extending his fchemes of conqueft: and grandeur, 
the Vizier muft have ever been expofed to the counteracting power 
of the Rohillas, who were all foldiers, and To far from refpefting 
his military capacity, they treated it with contempt and derifion. 
The conqueft of Rohilcund muft have therefore naturally com- 
pofal an cffential part of the Vizier's general plan of aggrandize- 

After his return from the Mahratta expedition, he defired a 
conference with the Governor of Bengal, for the purpofe of ad- 
jufting certain political meafures. Mr. Haftings, affociated with 
fome other members of the Government, was deputed to treat 
with the Vizier at Benares j and the principal objett of the meet- 
ing was alcribed to the motive of fixing the weftern pofleflions of 
the Englifh, on a firmer and more permanent bafis, by fome 
final arrangement of the territories that had been affigned to the 

Since the period of the treaty of 1765, Shah Alum had re- 
gained at Allahabad, where he had enjoyed a fplendid and a quiet 
retreat; but his wifhes feeming to be centered in enjoying the re- 
fidence of his capital, he proceeded thither in 177 1 : — facrificing, 
at once, the fubftantial benefits which had been conferred 0$ him 
Vol. I. X by 


by the bounty of the Englifh. The King was alfo excited to this 
meafure by his fervants, who faw the influence of a foreign power 
depriving them of the common advantages of their (ration, and of 
that fway which his difpofition naturally invited. The repeated 
foiicitation of the king for troops, to eftablifh his power at Dehli, 
were not acceded to in a manner that promifed any fuccefs : he 
procured two native battalions that had been maintained by him 
at Allahabad, but without the complement of European officers ; 
and this party, with about 20,000 irregular troops, commanded 
by Najeb Khan, arrived in the latter end of the year 1771, at 

The principal events of the life of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, being 
flenderly connected with the hiftory of Shah Alum, an occafional 
reference to it is only neceffary ; and it may here be obferved, that 
the meafures of an Indian court, too frequently operating through 
the many channels of deceit, or by the more daring acts of trea- 
chery, would offer little inftrucYion to the European reader, unlcfc 
they lead to decided revolutions, or affect the general fyftem of 

The Vizier did not depend upon the court of Dehli, for the 
fuccefs of his fchemes, or the advancement of his power. He 
maintained however an influence there, by the agency of Ellich 

• It is fetf, that the King's jWney was haftened by the intelligence of Zabitah 
Khan's fei/ure of Dehli, where he committed many outrages | even, according to 
fcpular repwt, ui the King's hanun. 


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Khan, one of his favourite fervants, who gratifying the King by 
opportune donations, procured the formal inveftiture of fuch ter- 
ritories, as the Vizier had either previoufly feized, or meditated the 
conqueft of. But we are not to fuppofe that the pofleffion of fuch 
inftruments, which had a conftant circulation, and flowed from too 
weak a fource to aft with efficacy, would effentially promote the- 


defigns of this prince. 

That fome parts of the treaty now entered into, between the 
Englilh Government and the Vizier, may be clearly underftood, it 
is neceflary to notice, that in a ftiort time after the departure of 
Shah Alum from the territories which had been afllgned to him, 
the right was judged to revert to the Englifh Government. On 
the King's junction with a body of Mahrattas, then ftationed in 
the vicinity of Agra, he was compelled to make a formal ceffion 
to them of the province of Corah, and the diftri&s of Currah. 
This furrendcr, to a power deemed hoftile to the welfare of Ben- 
gal, afforded a plea, equally founded on the rights of conqueft 
and good policy, to affume the relinquiftied territory : and the 
Vizier, who had with regret made the faciifice, exprefling, after 
the King's departure, an earneft dcfire of recovering the dif- 
membered country, his requeft, with certain qualifications, was 

X 2 IM 

• The treaty of 1773, contains little important matter, nor would I fatigue the 
reaJer with its perufol, did I not apprehend, that fome fcrious reflexions will occur, 
in comparing it with the events of the fuccceding year. It is fpecifitd, u That whercaa. 


In the conference at Benares, it was alfo ftipulated, that the 
Vizier fhould confirm Cheyt Sing, the fon and fucceflbr of Bulk* 
wunt Sing, in the poffeffion of Benares, and its dependencies. 

. . Tht 

* in the treaty concluded at Allahabad, on the 16th of Auguft 1-765, between the 
" Vizier and the Company, it is cxprcflcd that the diftricls of Corah and Allahabad 
" were given to His Majefty for his expences ; and whereas His Majefty abandoned 
« the pofleiEon 0/ the aforekid diftri&s, and even has given a funnud for Corah and 

* Currah to the Mahrattas, to the great prejudice of both the Vizier and Englifh 

* Company, and contrary to the meaning of the faid treaty ; he hath thereby forfeited 
«*■ his right to the faid diftricls, which have reverted to the Company, from whence he 
« received them : it is therefore agreed, that the aforcfaid diftricls {hall be put into 

* the poficlSon of the Vizier, on the following conditions, and that, in the fame 
** manner as the province of Oudo, and the other dominions of the Vizier arc pof- 
" fefied by him : fo (hall he poflefs Corah, and Currah, and Allahabad, for ever. — He 
** (hall by no means, or under any pretence, be liable to any obftruclions in the afore- 
<• faid countries from the Company, and the EngliQi chiefs and cxclufive of the money 
u now ftipulatcd, no mention or rcqucft ftall by any means be made to him for any 
w thing clfe due on this account. This agreement (hall be obferved by the Englifli 
M chiefs, gentlemen of the council, and the Company, nor Hull it be broken or devi* 
•J ated from. 

« coxniTioKs : 

« He (hall pay to the Company fifty lacks of Sicca Rupees, 

* according to the currency of the province of Oudc, viz. - - - 50,0^,000 

" In ready money. - -- -- -- -- -- -- - 20,00,000 

" In two years after the date hereof— viz. the fnft year - - - 15,00,000 

" The fecond year. - -- -- -- -- -- -- 15,00,000- 

Sa. Rs. 50,00,000 

«« To prevent any difpute arifing, concerning the payment which (hall be made by 

U the Vizier for thv Company's troops thai may march to his affiftancc, it is agreed, 

« that 

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The Vizier acquiefeed in this meafure with reluctance, and marks 
of extreme difguft. Not that he wifhed to deprive this chief of 
his poffeflions, but he was averfe to a foreign interference in be- 
half of a perfon whom he confidercd his immediate vaflal,. and 
who, by obtaining fo ftrong a fupport, would naturally deviate 
from that ftate of fubordination in which fuch landholders are 
placed under an effective Mahometan government. Shujah-ucU 
Dowlah, though accomplilhed in his manners, and endowed with 
an addrefs that diftinguifned him among the politeft of his coun~ 
trymcn, could not fupprcfs the indignation he felt at the Englifli 
Governor's defire, to have Cheyt Sing feated in his prefence. But 
the Vizier was then preparing a fuit * of fuch an importance to 

■ that the expences of a brigade (hall be computed at two lacks and ten thoufand 

* ( 2, 1 0,000 j Sicca rupees per month, according to the currency of theprovince of Oude> 

* — By a brigade, is meant as follows — 

" Two battalions of Europeans', 
«« Six battalions of Sepoys, and 
* { One company of artillery. 

•< The expence of the (aid troops {hall be defrayed by the Vizier, from the turn 
" thev ftu!l have paflcd the border of the province ; and cxclufivc of the above men- 
** tioncd fum, no more- i>:> any account fhall be demanded from him. Should the Com- 
« ( pany and the Englith chiefs have occafion to fend for the troops of the Vizier, the 
M Company, ai d the'ih chiefs, fhall alfo pay their cxpcncc in the like manner. — 
« Signed, fcaicd, and folemnly fworn to, by the contracting parties, September the 

? 7<"> 1773 " 

* A fupply of troops for the conqueft of Rohilcund. 



his fchemes, that had his refentments been keener, they would 
have been facrificed to its accomplifhment. 

That he might the more effectually prevent Englifli merchants 
or their agents from redding or negociating in his country, the 
Vizier obtained permiflion at this time to impofe large duties on 
the importation of Bengal, and European merchandize. He had 
witneffed the rapacious monopoly which the fervants of the Com- 
pany had exercifed in Bengal, and knew that many of the cala- 
mities which had befallen that country, might be juftly afcribed to 
the European aflumption of its commerce, which had been con- 
ducted on terms fo partial to themfeives, that almofl every other 
trader was obliged to purchafe an European name to cover his 
property. It is faid, that when Shujah-ud-Dowlah has been fo- 
licited to receive an Englifli merchant into his country, he has 
offered him an immediate fum of money, rather than rifle the ad- 
miflion of a fyftem that appeared wholly defhuclive of the true 
principles of trade. 

On the conclufion of the Benares treaty, the Vizier carried his 
arms againft the Mahrattah garrifons in the Duab, which he fe- 
verally expelled ; and extended his conqucfts as far to the weftward 
as the Fort of Jaunfy.* The main body of the Mahrattah army 
having moved into the Decan, without leaving a fufficient force to 

• Jaunfy ftands on the wtftcrn extremity of the Kalpy territory. Sec Rcnncll's map. 


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maintain their Duab pofll-flions, they fell to the Vizier without re- 
finance. A large diviiion of the country which he acquired in 
this campaign, had pertained to Ahmed Khan Bur.gulh, the late 
chief of Furruckabad, who was fucceeded by his adopted fon, 
Muzzuffer Jung ; a youth, whom the Mahrattas foon ftrippod of 
his moft valuable di ft ricts. The Vizier, to induce the neutrality of 
the Patans of Furruckabad, during his Duab expedition, promifed 
in the event of the Mahrattah expulfion, to rcftore to Muzzuffer 
Jung all the territory that had been poIkAed by Ahmed Khan. 
That the conduct of an Indian prince, in purfuit of a favourite 
object, or in the gratification of his ambition, may be fpeciScally 
viewed, I will infert the Vizier's treaty with Muzzuffer Jung, in 
which is feen a folemn proteftation made to God, the moft endear- 
ing terms of friendfliip and affection pledged to man, boldly ufed 
as the inftruments of treachery and difhonour. The ceremony of 
an oath is efteemed amongft the prefent race of Mahometans, a 
lhallow trite artifice, and is only adopted by thofe, who, from a 
want of ftronger refource, are driven to the necefijty of adopting 
iecondaiy aids. 

The treaty fets forth, " That in confequence of the friend- 
" fliip, that has for a long time fubfifted between Muzzuffer Jung, 
«* and my anceftors, and me, I have adopted him for my child. 
44 By the grace of God, I will do whatever may be for his good 
** or advantage. «I will confidcr his bufinefs, his friends, and his 
J* enemies, as mine ; and until our laft breath* we engage for our- , 

t felvcs. 


" felves, and for our defendants and fuccefibrs, that we will re- 
" main united.—I fwcar, by the Almighty God, by his Prophet, 
" and the Holy Koran, never to vary or depart from this treaty, 
" upon condition that my beloved fon Muzzuffer Jung do adhere 
" to it alfo on his part. In witnefs whereof, thefe lines are writ- 
ct ten in the ftyle of a treaty. By the grace of God, whenever 
u the Mahrattas arc conquered, and driven out of the country, 
" and mine enemies expelled, I will deliver up to my dearly beloved 
" fon, Muzzuffer Jung, the territories he formerly pofiTefled, and 
" which he has loft in the war, to the Mahrattas. Dated accord- 
" ing to the Chriftian aera, January, 1774.'* 

Shujah-ud-Dowlah did expel the Mahrattas from the 
Bungufh territory ; but he did not fulfil the tenor of his treaty 
with Muzzuffer Jung, to whom, on the fuccefs of the Mahratta 
campaign, he gave a fmall fum of money, but no part of the 
country which had been fo folemnly promifed. 

The grand object of the Vizier's ambition had ripened into 
maturity, and was now publicly avowed : — he applied to the Englifh 
Government for a body of troops, to aflift in the conqueft of Ro- 
hilcund, the chiefs of which, he rcprefented, had refufed to per- 
form their engagements with him, and had ever been the inveterate 
enemies of his houfe. The Government appear to have been 
deeply embarrafled by the Vizier's requifition : they faw the danger 
of carrying their arms againft a remote and warlike people, and 
they felt a difficulty in framing the caufe of a war againft a nation 

- from 

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from whom they had received no injury. After an indecifive de- 
liberation of fome days, they confented to commit the unreferved 
management of the Oude negotiation to the Governor. — He alfo 
cxprefled an averfion to extend the military operations of the 
Englifh to fo diftant a quarter, and propofed, that a demand of 
fuch magnitude fhould be made for the aid required, that the Vi- 
zier would neceflarily be induced to withdraw the application. 
Conformably to this counfe), an Englifh brigade was tendered to 
the Vizier, for the purpofe of promoting the conqueft of Rohil- 
cund ; on the condition of four lacks of rupees being paid to the 
Company on the completion of the fervice, and the monthly fub- 
fidy of two lacks and ten thoufand rupees, during the refidence of 
the troops in his dominions. The conduct of Government does 
not authorize an inference that the Vizier would ultimately refuje 
his aflent to thefe terms j for an order was difpatched to the factory 
at Patna, directing that the motions of a brigade ftationed in that 
quarter, fliould, without further communication with the Prefi- 
dency, be directed by the future instructions of the Vizier, who 
was at the fame time advifed of the meafure that had been adopted. 
— The Vizier, thus powerfully aided in the profecution of his fa- 
vorite fcheme, conducted his operations with celerity. The Go- 
vernor had not informed the Council of the Vizier's defigns on 

Rohilcund until the latter end of November,* yet the brigade 


Vol. I. Y marched 


marched in the following January, and in the fhort fpace of about 
three months,* the Rohillas were completely defeated in a pitched 
battle that was fought in the centre of their country. Near five 
thoufand of them were killed and wounded ; but the lofs became 
irretrievable by the death of their chief, who was (lain in the ac- 
tion. Hafiz Rhamut, though lie bled in an honourable caufe, 
merited a milder fate. He had never been the enemy of the 
Englifh, and he had protected Shujah-ud-Dowlah at the loweA* 
ebb -f of his fortunes. 

After the engagement, Fyze-ullah Khan retreated with a 
large party of the routed army to Lall Dong4 where he took poft 
on the fide of a ftecp hill. The Vizier, accompanied by the 
Englifh brigade, inverted the intrenchments of the Rohillas, who 
being reduced to various diftrefs, from a confined unhealthy 
{ituation, and ferving under a leader of no military talents, they 
propofed earned terms of accommodation to the Englifh com- 
manding officer j who urged, and prevailed on the Vizier, after a 
long ftruggle, to liberate Fyze-ullah, and cede to him a certain 
territory in Rohilcund. This chief, before the war, held the 

Jaguir of Rampour, rated at five lacks of rupees } but this con- 


• The battle was fought on the 23d of April, 1774, near the village of Teflunah. 
—For the (ituation, Vide Rennell's map. 

f Shujah-ud-Dowlab, with his family, took refuge in Rohilcund after the battle of 

t The northern boundary of Rohilcund, 


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vention * inverted him with a revenue of fifteen lacks, and the 
moft fertile quarter of Rohilcund. 

Fyze-ullah Khan, having concluded the negotiation, which 
was wholly effe&ed by the Englifh officer, with whom a counter- 
part of the treaty was executed that the fanc~Uon of the Company 
might be obtained, he paid, according to a previous flipulation, a 
gratuity of fifteen lacks of rupees to the Vizier. The change of 

• « Whereas friendship is cfUblilhed between me and Fyze-ullah Khan. — I give 
%t unto him Rampour, and fome other diftrids dependent thereon, altogether amount- 
M ing to 14 lacks and 75,600 rupees yearly ; and I direct that the (aid Fyze-ullah 
" Khan do on oo account take into his pay above 5000 foldiers. I engage, at all times 
«• and on all occafions, to prefervc the honor of the laid Fyzc-ullah Khan, and to aft 
** for his good and advantage, on the condition, that he (hall look to no other power 
u but mine for fupport ; that be engages to correfpond with no other date than the 
" Englifh. Our enemies and friends are mutual. Fyze-ullah Khan fhall affift me 
* with l or 3000 troops according to his ability. If I go in pcrfon on any expedition, 
«» or to any part of my dominions, Fyzc-ullah Khan {hall attend me } and as the num- 
M ber of 5000 troops which Fyze-ullah Khan is allowed at all times to keep up, is 
" fmall, and he may be unable to bring them all into the field with him, in fuch cafe, 
" 1 will place from 2 to 40O0 men under his command, that he may join me with bc- 
«* coming dignity: the pay of thefe additional troops to be found by me. It is upon 
" the abovementioned confiderations that I confent to fettle upon Fyze-uMah Khan 
" the faid country, and engage to fupport his interefts. If he continue firm in the 
" performance of this treaty, by the grace of God, I never will be backward in con- 
fulting his advantage and good. — He is to caufe all the Rohillas to crofs the river 
** Ganges. Sworn by the Holy Koran, calling God and his Prophets to witneft to 
«* the performance of thefc articles." 

Extratiti from the Bengal Col. Champion* t Rujjeh x 18S Heg'tra. 

Rttordt of 1774. Sea/. Odder, 1774, A. D. 



the fyftem of the Bengal Government which began to operate at 
this time, and was hoftile to the councils of Shujah-ud-Dowlah*, 
might alfo have impelled him to a fpeedy conclufion of the Ro- 
hilla treaty. 

In the year 1783, Fyze ullah was liberated from all military 
vaflalage to the Vizier, on the payment of a fum of money to the 
Englifh refident at Lucknow, which was applied to the fervice of 
the Bengal Government. 

But had Shujah-ud-Dowlah been permitted to purfue the 
fyftem of policy which had been obferved to the other Rohilla 
chiefs, Fyze-ulhh would at this day have languifhed in poverty 
and dependance. Happily for this chief and the refidue of his 
nation who have now fertilized and made populous a large tract of 
country, a powerful advocate came forth in their behalf, who 
though the leader of a fubfidiary body, aflumed in an honourable 
caufe, the efficient power of protection. The Vizier„ in an acri- 
monious complaint preferred againft this officer, obferves, " that 
" as it had been his abfolute determination to extirpate the Ro- 
™ hillas, and for that purpofe requefted the afliftance of the Eng- 
u lifK troops, was it not highly improper in the commanding 
" officer, to enter into fuch a correfpondence without his per- 
" miffion ?" The Vizier had in truth refolved to deftroy the Ro- 
hillas, or expel them j and this refolution fliaped the whole form 
of his conduit during the campaign in Rohilcund. He enter- 

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tained fo rooted a dread of this people from their valour and 
haughty fpirit, or perhaps a confeioufnefs of the injuries he had 
already committed, that he would not permit thofe that were fub- 
je&ed to remain in any part of his dominions. 

At the clofe of this general defcription of the progrefs of the 
Englifti arms in Rohilcund, [for the aids afforded by the Vizier can 
fcarcely claim a notice,] I will infert fome obfervations on the ten- 
dency and erfe&s of our engagements with the Vizier in the reduc- 
tion of that territory. It is manifeftly feen, that the Government 
of Bengal were either unacquainted with the virtue and extent of 
their compact with the Vizier, or that they avowedly aflifted him 
in (hipping one of their allies of his hereditary poffeffion. It was 
roundly agreed to invert the Vizier with the dominion of Rohil- 
cund, the limits of which were carried to the mountains on the 
north, and to the river Ganges on the weft. Yet a large tract of 
the northern divifion of Rohilcund, was held by Zabitah Khan,* 
with whom the Englifh were at this time in alliance, and bound by 
a treaty u to confirm to him his ancient dominions, to confider 
" him as a dependant on their favor, and that their friends and 
enemies mould be mutual." 
The Vizier, previoufly to the invafion of Rohilcund, had 
brought over to his interefts Zabitah Khan ; who though of the 
Rohilla feci:,' and of near affinity to many of the chiefs, united 

• The ton of Najcb-ud-Dowlah, 


with the Vizier againft the caufc of his nation. But he was fc- 
vcrely puniftied for his treachery, and the dilhonorable connec- 
tion he had formed for the Vizier, after the completion of the 
conqueft, aflerting that Zabitah Khan had during the war main- 
tained a correfpondcncc with the enemy, feized on all his terri- 
tory eaft of the Ganges j and it remains at this day annexed to 
the Government of Oude. 

The conduct: of the Vizier alfo to the family of Mohubullah 
Khan,* evinces that eveiy fentiment of honour and faith fell 
before the impulfe of his ambition. This chief, who held the 
town and diftri£ts of Biuouly, either from having been involved 
in a domeftic conteft with thofe Rohilla ftates who appeared ia 
arms againft the Vizier, or from other motives, did not engage 
in the war. Before the army moved into Rohilcund, he fued 
the Vizier for protection in behalf of his family and property* 
which the prince, in ftrong and unequivocal terms, pledged to 
prcferve in fafety and honour. On this faith, Mohubullah Khan 
remained during the campaign at Biffouly ; but on the Vizier's 
arrival at that place, he was, with his family, thrown into a 
rigorous confinement, pillaged of every article of value, and his 
women were treated with a di {graceful feverity. In an addrefs of 
Mohubullah to the Englilh commanding officer, in which were 
alfo inclofcd the original letters of the Vizier, granting an unre- 

• The fon of Dhoondy Khan, who has been already noticed in the Rohilla Iketches. 


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ferved protection, he writes, " The Vizier has deprived us of our 
** country, of our riches, and even of our honour ; and, not con- 
" tented with that, he is going to fend us prifoners to Fyzeabad. 
*' We defire no country, no riches* no houfc •, but at Biilbuly are 
" the tombs of our family — near them, and under fome fhade, 
** we beg pcrmiflion to pafs, as mendicants, the remainder of our 
u days. Relying on the Vizier's promifes, we remained in this 
" country ; otherwife, we fhould, like the other chiefs, have fled, 
" and preferved our character and honour : thefe, with our effects, 
" he has taken away ; and how he has difhonoured us, is known 
" to all.'* The Vizier is faid to have exercifed an indecent rigour 
towards the female prifoners of the Rohillas who fell into his 
hands j and he is accufed alfo of having violated the chaftity of 
fome women of the family of Hafiz Rhamut.* The laft allega- 
tion is not fupported by any fubftantial authority ; nor indeed, are 
fuch acts of outrage common amongft the moft intemperate Ma- 
hometans j who, however prone to other excefles, are not often 
fcen tearing afunder the veil of the haram. 

The oppreflions and rapacity of the Vizier in the courfe of 
the conqueft, affixed a deep ftain on the Englifh character. The 
vanquilhed naturally fuppofed, that the hand which had led him 
to victory, could have been efficiently exerted m relrraining his 

* Shujah-ud-DowIah was imprcflTed with fo lively a fenfe of indignation, at the 
difgrace, as well as the injufticc of this charge, that he burft into tears, when he was 
informed that it had beca believed by the Englifh commanding officer. 



violence. The caufe fpecifically held out by the Vizier for making 
war on the Rohillas, was their with-holding payment of the fum 
which they had offered for the fervice of an Englifh brigade. It 
has been (hewn that the brigade did not arrive in Rohilcund at a 
due feafon : for the Mahrattas had, in two fucceflive years, com- 
mitted wide devaluations in that country, and were leaving it when 
the Englifli troops appeared. The arguments ufed by the Vizier, 
in fupport of the invafion, were weakly maintained, on either a 
principle of equity or reafon : and his purpofes might have been 
effected without the exhibition of fo wretched a cloak. In coun- 
tries where the paths of rectitude and honour are more precifely 
defcribed and adhered to than in Hindoftan, the political ufage of 
princes does not widely deviate from the conduct purfued by Shu- 
jah-ud-Dowlah in infuring fuccefs to his fchemes of ambition. 
But what can be urged in vindication of the Englifli, who, to 
gratify a rapacious ally, and without even acquiring an adequate 
benefit to the ftate, effected the destruction of a nation, againft 
whom they could not fabricate a fpecious caufe of complaint ? 

The fubject of the Rohilla war hath already been fo widely 
dilated by thofe who promoted, and thofe who have condemned, 
the meafure, that I am fearful of giving difguft by any further 
«nlargement ; nor docs the difcuffion properly belong to the pur- 
pofe of this effay : yet I cannot refrain from pointing at the ill 
policy of the Englifh, in annexing Rohilcund to the dominion of 
the Vizier. The injuftice of the act, with the fevere effects that 


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followed, are now admitted by moll clafles of men ; and has im- 
printed a deep ftain on the Britifh name in India. The Government 
of Bengal, in afligning a reafon for inverting the Vizier with the 
pofleflion of Rohilcund, afferted, that the more powerful this prince 
became, the greater advantage would accrue to them from his al- 
liance. The difpofition of Shujah-ud-Dowlah muft have been ill 
known to the Englifti, or they would not have urged Co frail an 
argument. Jealous of authority, and infatiably ambitious, he had 
already felt a keen refentment at the encroachments of Bengal on 
his prerogative, and national power, the prefer vation of which had 
long directed the fpirit of his councils, and the actions of his go- 
vernment. The Rohilla nation formed a weighty counterpoife to 
the real ftrength and reftlefs temper of the Vizier, who finding 
himfclf checked by a people naturally interefted in keeping a vigi- 
lant watch over his actions, leaft they mould fuffcr by too great 
an increafc of his power, muft have been neceflitated to depend 
on the Engltfb, to repel the encroachment or attacks of the Ro- 
hillas, and the other northern ftates. Our pofieffions in India, 
virtually acquired by the fuperiority of arms, and the eminent abi- 
lities of Britifh officers, can only be preferved, after maintaining 
that fuperiority, by a fteady adherence to the principles of juftke 
and public faith, — virtues which did not confpicuoufly diftinguifli 
the iaft negotiation with the Vizier : nor were the dictates of com- 
mon policy confulted, unlefs the axiom becomes manifeft, which 
Vol. I. 7f even 


even the moll vifionary politician would ftartle at, that nations may 
be linked together by the bonds of gratitude and friendfhip. 

Shujah-ud-Dowlah was yet employed in arranging the 
affairs of the conquered province, when a diibrder which had for 
fome time afflicted him, broke out with fuch violence, that he was 
obliged to retire to Fyzeabad, where he died in the month of Ja- 
nuary 1775, at the age of 46 years. His death was occafioned by 3 
venereal tumour, that had been unflrilfully treated by a French 
lurgeon, who adminiftered to him fo large a quantity of mercury, 
that his ftrength, then nearly exhaufted, was overpowered by the 
force of the medicine. The violence of the complaint had been 
removed by a profeffional gentleman of the brigade, who ferved in 
the Rohilla expedition j but being called into the provinces, the 
rure was not completed. The difputes of the Vizier and the 
Englifh commanding officer, had arifen to fuch a pitch of inve- 
teracy, that though the life of the Vizier was the pledge, and 
•ultimately the facrifice, he would not folicit the attendance of the 
field furgeon* 

Shujah-ud-Dowlah died at a period when his third of do- 
minion had been largely indulged, and his power had arifen per- 
haps to its meridian height. The new members of the Bengal 
Government who arrived in the preceding year,* were inimical to 


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his public intcrefts, and feemed even to bear an enmity to his per- 
fon. The projects with which his mind teemed would foon have 
matured, and produced the crifis of his fortune; when he would 
either have arifen into powerful independence, or funk into a (ra- 
tion lefs resectable than that now occupied by his fucceflbr. His 
views were difclofed with fo little referve, and he perfonaily gave 
fuch unequivocal teftimony of his future defigns, that his political 
character was arraigned by all men of difcernment. He frequently 
told his courtiers, that after the conqueft of Rohilcund, he would 
penetrate into the territory of the Mahrattas, and take an exem- 
plary vengeance for the ravages they had committed in Hindoftan. 
He evinced alfo an anxious defire to attain the direction of 
affairs at Dehli, and controul the remains of military power yet 
preferved to the houfe of Timur. But in this profpect he was 
thwarted by Nudjef Khan, who had the office of captain-general, 
and who had acquired, by his fucceffes in the field, an extenfive 
tract of country wholly independant of the imperial authority. * 
The Englifti had been taught to believe, that Shujah-ud-Dow- 
lah, from a principle of felf-intereft, was attached to their nation; 
that aware of the infufficiency of his own ability, either to encreafe 
his dominion, or refift the attacks of an enemy, he would ulti- 
mately depend on them for protection. However juft their opi- 
nions might have been of the real ftrength and refource of this 
prince, it would appear that he himfelf held them, (efpecially 
when augmented by the conqueft of Rohilcund, and other ex- 

Z 2 pected 


peded aids), adequate to the accompliftiment of purpofes, which 
bore no relation to an Englifh policy. His pride and ambition, 
which were exceffive, had been mortified by many acts of the 
Bengal Government ; and the restrictions impofed by the Allaha- 
bad deputation, he deemed violently oppreMive, and an infringe- 
ment of the treaty that had been made by Lord Clive. But con- 
cealing his rcfentmcnt with an admirable addrefs, be diligently 
fearched for expedients to diflblve a connection which placed him 
in fo fubordinate a condition. Shujah-ud-Dowlah had felt, and 
refolved to adopt, the European difcipline. Exclufive of the French 
who were employed in forming his troops, he had folicitcd a fupply 
of Englifti officers to aceomplifh his purpofe. But fubfequently 
to the application, the Government of Calcutta had been new mo- 
deled, and feeing it hoftile to his interefts, he rcfufed the fervice of 
any perfon who held a commiflion in the Englifh army. I have 
obtained an information, fupported by documents of fubftantial 
authority, but which I am not empowered to bring forward, that 
Shujah-ud-Dowlah, in the laft moments of his life, was actively 
employed in forming fchemes of independence, and even purfuing 
meafures to extirpate the Englifli power in India. The French 
officers in the fervice of this prince, improving on his ill humour 
to the Englifh Government, reprefented to him that an alliance 
with France might be made the effectual inftrument of emancipat- 
ing his country from controul, and enable him to profecute with 
fuccefs his fchemes of conqueft. The Vizier eagerly hearkened to 


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this language, and agreed to open the negotiation ; but the kecnw 
nefs with which he commenced it, prevented his feeing the diflr- 
culties which would have obftructed its purpofe. It was ftipulated 
by the agents at Oude, that a body of French troops mould land 
on the coaft of Cam bay, and marching acrofs the upper part of 
the pcninfula, enter the vveftern frontier of Oude. Had the Vizier 
made the experiment, he would have witnefifed the impracticability 
of the project, and the vifionary fchemes of thefe French adven- 
turers. But a miniftry of France, it is to be prefumed, would 
have altogether rejected the meafure, and have forefeen that the 
attempt of conveying an European force over fo large a tract of 
country, inhabited by powerful military tribes, who entertain a 
common jealoufy of Europeans, muft have been fruftrated by the 
furrounding impediments. The fact which is now related, ftands 
accompanied with fuch a variety of corroborating proofs, that I 
am induced firmly to believe its authenticity. Shujah-ud-Dowlah 
who felt the foice of the Englilh power both in its open and cor*- 
cealed directions, acted- confiftently with the ftation he occupied, 
in endeavouring to remove a preflure fo galling and difgraceful ; 
and had he lived until a later period, when the Englifh nation in 
India was encounteied by a hofl: of aflailants, and finking under an 
accumulated load of inteltine calamities, we might have been fc- 
verely puniflicd for having too powerfully armed the hands of this 
prince. His memory, I truft, will not be injured, if I place Shu- 
jah-ud-Dowlah at the crifis adverted to, amongft the foremoft of 



the enemies of the Englifli; when, to the extent of his abilities, 
he would probably have been feen making ftrong exertions to wipe 
off his former difgrace, and gratify a private rcfentment. 

Having marked the more confpicuous outline of the tranfac- 
tions of Shujah-ud-Dowlah, I will clofe it with fome defultory 
obfervations on his character. In treating of the perfonal qualities 
of this Prince, it rauft be noticed, that they pertain to a native of 
Hindoftan, whofe mind, fettered by religious prejudices and the 
effects of a narrowed education, is rarely incited to the fearch of 
knowledge. The fame actions which are countenanced, and even 
applauded by a Mahometan, would in the European world be often 
viewed with difguft, or fall under a fevere reprehenfion of the 
Law. Under this preliminary fanction, it may with juftice be 
jaid, that the Prince who has been the fubjea of this treatife, pof- 
fefled a penetrating underftanding, and an active mind. His dif- 
pofition, when no grand object interpofed, had a general tendency 
to promote the welfare of his fubjects : and he was always averie 
to acts of barren cruelty. 

In the year 1765, Shujah-ud-Dowlah's revenue did not amount 
to more than one hundred and twenty thoufand pounds, and his 
army had been fo much reduced by the effects of the defeat at 
Buxar, that it was incapable of defending his territory ; yet at the 
expiration of ten years, the period of his death, he held a domini- 
on which produced a revenue of three hundred and fixty thoufand 
poinds ; and he maintained in his fervice, one hundred thoufand 


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fighting men. When it is admitted, that in the acq i;i fit ion of do- 
minion, in maintaining an important Ration amongft the ftates 
of India, and in the falutary government of his country, this 
Prince difplayed an enlarged genius, it muft aho be allowed, that 
he derived a real ftrength, and a large portion of political con- 
fluence, from the intimate connection he had formed with the 
government of Bengal ; over which, he feemed, at one period, 
to have excrcifed a prevailing influence. Had Shujah ud-Dowlah 
diflblved his Englilh alliance, the fecurity of his country, and the 
execution of his fchemes, would have chiefly depended on the force 
of his army, and the ability of his officers j for he hirafelf was not 
endowed with the genius of a foldicr. He wanted that valour, or 
courage, which is ever ihewn in the event of common danger, and 
at every feafon which requires its exertion : but when perfonal 
ftrength, or flcill, was to decide the combat, Shujah-ud-Dowlah 
had few equals. He rode, without fear, the moft unruly horfes ; 
he would attack with the fword, match-lock, or the bow, m the 
ufe of which weapons he was wonderfully expert, the moft furious 
animal of the field. This fpecies of courage he feems to have ac- 
quired from his flcill in the ufe of arms, and in the ftrength and 
activity of his body. In fituations of indifcriminate danger ; as 
in the day of battle, he is faid to have been deficient in the ordi- 
nary exertions of fortitude. Though Shujah-ud-Dowlah was the 
oftenfible conductor of the Rohilla war, he evinced throughout 
the campaign a marked pufillanimity ; and in the engagement 



with Hafiz Rhamut, who like a brave foldier had occupied the 
foremofl: rank of the battle, Shujah-ud-Dowlah, fheltering himfelf 
in the rear, is accufed of betraying evident figns of fear, which 
were not wholly effaced, until he faw the fevered head of the Ro- 
hilla chief. 

Like the men of rank in Afia, he was courteous and affable, 
had jin infinuating addrefs, and accomplifhed manners. Thefe 
qualifications, united with a large well-formed perfon, and a hand- 
fome countenance, gave him powerful advantages, as well in his 
intercourfe with foreign agents, as in the adminiftration of his own 
government. With a foothing flow of language he could calm 
the moft outrageous claimants, who though aware of the futility of 
the language, feldom left his prefence but under the impreflion of 
a momentary pleafure. He had acquired an extenfive knowledge 
in the practice of every fpecies of deceit, and he could perform with 
facility every character that was neceflary to conduct the various 
purpofes of delufion or treachery. Though capable of executing 
the fubtilcft fcheme of intrigue, he was fubject to occafional emo- 
tions of anger, which have frequently clouded his countenance at 
fcafons when they were hoftile to his views. In his family, he 
performed the duties of a mild, indulgent parent, and a kind matter. 
When an object of policy called for pecuniary diftribution, he 
could lavifh with a liberal hand ; but generoiity did not form a 
fixed part of his difpofition : He was equally rapacious in ac- 
quiring, as fordid in preferving wealth. Shujah-ud-DovvIah's ex- 

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cefies in venery, which knew no controul, led him to commit 
actions derogatory from his ftation, as well as pernicious to his 
health ; and even when his diforder had produced an irrecoverable 
ftage of difeafe, he continued to indulge in a promifcuous ufe of 
women. His haram was filled with wives and concubines, to the 
number, it is faid, of eight hundred, from whom were born to 
him fifty children. — Mirzah Arnany, afterwards entitled AfofF-ud- 
Dowlah, was the eldeft legitimate fon, and fuccecded to the entire 
dominion of Oudc without tumuli or oppofition. 

Vol. J 



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^mmmm m 


Bella/pour, 2 2d February > 1783. 


BEFORE I leave our Indian world, let 
me, through you, make an acknowledgment for the many cordial 
marks of friendfliip, and the kind afiiftance, I have received, 
throughout every ftation in the provinces. The gentlemen of 
Bengal have been long noted for their hofpitable conduct to ftran- 
gers ; and in mine own inftance, I can teftify that they amply merit 
the commendation. The reward due to a difpofition fo happily 
framed, they enjoy to a large extent } they experience thofe heart- 
felt pleafures which arife from the exercife of humane and liberal 
offices, and which ever convey an abundant recompence for the in- 
conveniencies fuftained in their gratification.— Having difcharged, 

A a 2 to 


to the beft of my ability, this indifpcnfable duty, I proceed to give 
you an account of my journey hither. 

On the 8th of February, I left Rarnpour, and arrived at Mo- 
radabad — ten colTes. This town, /landing on the banks of the 
river Ramgunga, is fituatcd in the Vizier's country, which is fepa- 
rated from the diftritts of Fyze-ullah, a few miles to the north- 
weft of it, by the river Ramgunga. Moradabad was once a place 
of diftincYion ; but like many other places which once came under 
that defcription in Hindoftan, is at this day greatly decayed. 
Having frequently feen rupees of the coinage of Moradabad, and 
thofe of a very general currency, I apprehend that an extenfive 
mint has been eftablifhed at this place. A hot bath is now amongft 
the few remains of its grandeur, in which, with great ceremony, I 
performed the Mahometan ablutions i being received amongft my 
new brethren, as a Moghul officer, employed in the Vizier's 

Early on the next morning, I left Moradabad, and arrived; 
under an intenfely hot fun, at the village of Aumruah — twelve 
coffes. On the day of my departure from Rarnpour, I had a com- 
plete view of the lofty range of northern mountains, whofe fum- 
mits are covered with perpetual fnows : they extend nearly in a 
parallel from caft to weft, and form, I (hould imagine, the north- 
ern barrier between Hindoftan and Thibet. To know the opinion 
of the people concerning this extraordinary appearance, I enquired 
of a fellow-traveller, the caufe of fo confpicuous a whitenefs. He 

* fardj 

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faid, that it proceeded from a particular fort of clay, with which 
the hills in that quarter were covered. I foon perceived that the 
talk of explaining the real caufe would have been equally arduou9 
with an attempt of making him acquainted with the properties of 
the magnetic needle ; fo, exprcfling my furprize at the Angular 
quality of the earth, I left him, flattered, no doubt, with the im- 
portance of his communication. The moft (hiking objeft to be 
feen at Aumruah, is the body of a notorious robber, which, fuf- 
pended by the heels from a tree, affords an ufeful fpeclacle of ter- 
ror. Travelling is by no means attended with danger in this part 
of India, as may be proved by my example : for in no part of the 
roads from Benares to this place, though chiefly alone, did I meet 
with impediment or ill ufage ; and I fliould hold rnyfelf guilty of 
an injuftice, did I not unrefervedly declare, that the inhabitants 
treated me with civility, and, ufually, with kindnefs. 

On the nth, at Chandpour — 12 cofles. Finding the want 
of a fervant fubje&ed me to various inconveniences, efpecially from 
the diflike of the Serauce keepers to rub down my horfe, which is 
I believe, the only fcruple they entertain, I took into my fervice an 
old foldier, who by his own ftory had been engaged in many a 
fell encounter : nor did his figure belye it, for amongft the numer- 
ous defperate marks of his profcflion, he bore one on his face which 
had wholly excavated the right eye. 

On the nth, at the village of Burroo — twelve colTes. This 
place affords no public accommodation for paffengcrs r but the 



pompous language of the old warrior, who entitled me a Moghul 
officer of the Vizier's, going to join the army then forming againft 
the Sicques, procured a hofpitable reception; nor did he fail to 
reap the advantage of our borrowed character. 

On the 12th, at Najebabad — eleven cofles. Najeb-ud-Dow- , 
lah,* who built this town, faw that its fituation would facilitate 
the commerce of Kalhmire, which having been diverted from its 
former channel of Lahore and Dehli, by the inroads of the Sicques, 
Mahrattas, and Afghans, took a courfe through the mountains at 
the head of the Punjab, and was introduced into the Rohilla coun- 
try through the Lali Dong pafs. This inducement, with the defire 
of eftablifhing a mart for the Hindoos of the adjacent mountains, 
probably influenced the choice of this fpot ; which otherwifc is not 
favorable for the fite of a capital town, being low, and furrounded 
with fwampy grounds. About a year after the death of this chief, 
the fort of Najeb Ghur, which is contiguous to the town, was 
attacked by the Mahrattas, who had compelled Shah Alum, the 
reigning emperor, to accompany their army. The garrifon made 
a good defence, and would not, it is faid, have furrendered, had 
Zabitah Khan, the fon of Najeb-ud-Dowlah, then lying in the 
neighbourhood with a refpeclable force, moved to its afiiftance. 
But without offering to face the enemy, or throw any relief into 
the fort, he croffed the Ganges, and fought fhelter in Ghous Ghur. 

• The chief who has been already mentioned in the Rohilla tra& 


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Since that period, or rather fince the death of its founder, Najeba- 
bad has fallen from its former importance, and feems now chiefly- 
upheld by the languifhing trade of Kafhmire. 

A small karavanferah, the only one in the place, being occu- 
pied, I thought myfelf fortunate in getting admittance into a 
cook's fhop, where kabaubs * and ftewed beef were drefled in fa- 
voury tafte, and all the news-mongers, idlers, politicians, and dif- 
banded foldiers, of the quarter, refort. Whilft I was eating my 
mefs, a boy came in and afked, if any travellers were going to 
Jumbo or Kafhmire, as the kafilah *f- would depart on the next 
day. On enquiring particularly into the (late of this intelligence, 
I learned, that about one hundred mules, laden with raw filk, and 
cotton cloths, and ordinary callicoes, for the Jumbo X market, 
had already moved to the fkirts of the town. Having been fur- 
nifhed with a letter to a banker at Najeb Ghur, who has the ge- 
neral charge of difpatching kafilahs, I was introduced by him to 
the merchants, who received me without hesitation. When in- 
terrogated on the fcore of my bufinefs, I defcribed myfelf as a Turk, 
going to Kafhmire to purchafe fhfuls. The Turkifti language 
being in thefe parts wholly unknown, and as traders of various 
nations often carry into Kafhmire bills, or fpecie only, my ftory 

* Meat minced and drefled in the manner of what culinary language calls, ftntd- 
wuat balls j but kabaub, in a general fenfe, is any roaftcd food, 
f Karavan. — Koflah is the term peculiar to India and Pcrfia. 
X A town fituate about aoo miles to the S. E. of Kalhmkc. 



obtained a general credit. After a mature consideration of the 
perfonal qualities of my fervant, which, poor fellow, had been 
much impaired by time and adverfe fortune, they were condemned 
as altogether unfit for the fervice that lay before us ; and one of 
the paflengers ill-naturedly obferved, that a man fliould have all 
his eyes about him who attempted to penetrate into Kafhmire. 
To fill up this vacancy, (for dreading the difficulties of the journey, 
he himfelf exprcfied a reluctance to proceed), I had the good for- 
tune to obtain a Kafhmirian, who was at all points qualified for 
my purpofe. He had travelled through a great part of Ipdia mid 
Afghaniftan, and I foon difcovered, that together with an u....,ite 
refource in every embarraflment, he poMeMed a fund of carious 
hiftory, which he did not fail to cmbellifh with a large fhare of 
humour and vanity. But I will fum up his eulogy, and at once 
tell you that he was, take him for all in all, one of the beft fervants 
I had ever known ; and could I have acquired the art of qualifying 
a rather too redundant (hare of acidity and warmth of difpofition, 
he would liave proved a treafure to me., Being well verfed in all" 
the fchcrae of an Indian journey, he made the neceflary prepara- 
tions, and took on him every trouble j fo I could now freely in- 
dulge my pleafures, which centred chiefly in hearing and telling 
frories, and fmoaking my pipe. 

On the 14th, at Ramnaghur*— nine cofles. This village is in 
ruins, but having a large well of water, it is ufually made the firft: 
northern halting place from Vajzibabad. 


Digitized by Google 


On the 15th, at Lall Dong — eight cones. Theftation where 
Fyze-ullali, as has been noticed, took poft after the Rohilla bat- 
tle. — Lall Dong is the northern limit of this fide of the Vizier's 
territory, which is feparated from Siringnaghur by a rivulet. A 
detention at this place for the adjuftment of fome kafilah account?, 
gives me an opportunity of drawing a fketch of the unrounding ob- 
jects, and the ceconomy of a karavan. 

The country from Najeb Ghur to this frontier is chiefly a 
wafte, over-run with low wood, and is ill fupplicd with water, 
there being none in the fpace from Ramnaghur to the neighbour- 
hood of Lall Dong. The inhabitants fay, that in the time of 
Najeb-ud-Dowlah, the land now overgrown with wpod, was a 
cultivated plain but fuch is the precarious ftate of the native ter- 
ritories of Hindoftan, from the inert difpofition which, with little 
deviation, pervades the body of the people, that its welfare mult 
largely depend on the ability and executive talents of one man j 
and a fucccflion of able rulers, being a rare event in the hiftory of 
nations, we are not to wonder at the ruinous ftate into which 
many of the moft valuable provinces of Hindoftan have fallen. 
But on the other hand, the efforts of an active prince, arc ever 
followed by rapid fuccefs. Habitations are at a moderate expence 
fpeedily erected, and the implements of agriculture are of fo fimple 
and eafy a conftruction, that moft hufbandmen, with a very fmull 
help of an artificer, can make their own machines. 

The greateft extent of plain, and that was limited, lying on 
Voi. I. Bb the 


the north fide of the rivulet, the kafilah encamped on the Siring- 
naghur quarter, where we were all feen bufily engaged in preparing 
for the enfuing journey of three days, which lay through a foreft. 
The weather during the day, growing now extremely hot, it was 
neceffary to provide fome covering in fubftitute of a tent. I there- 
fore made a purchafe of a large black kummul, or blanket, which 
being flantingly extended over a flight bamboo frame, compofed 
of a ridge pole upheld by two fupporters, and fattened below by 
fmall pins, formed a commodious and portable lodging. My bag- 
gage, coriefponding with the ftrength of my horfe, was compofed 
of a thin mattrafs, a quilt, a canvas portmanteau, containing a few 
Ihifts of linen, which fupplied aifo the place of a pillow, and the 
aforementioned kummul. Thefe neceffaries, with an oil bag car- 
ried by the Kaflimirian, afforded a fufficient accommodation ; nor 
(hould any perfon travelling in my manner, have more equipage. 
A larger will raife unfavorable conjectures, and fubjeel him to fre- 
quent inveftigation, delay, and taxes. 

On the 22d, the kafilah moved, and penetrating fix cones, 
through the mountains, bf a north-weft courfe, halted for the 
benefit of its water, near a fmall ftream. In this day's journey, I 
had many occafions of feeing that our mules* were flrong and 
Jure-footed. It was wonderful to obferve the cafe and dexterity 
with which thefe animals, heavily laden, clambered up fteep and 

• They arc brought into the northern parts of India, from Aighaniflan. 


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rugged 1 paths. The proprietors of the goods, chiefly refictents of 
Benares, Lucknow, and Fumickabad, had appointed agents to 
aecompany the ka6h|h, who are not the ultimate venders of the 
merchandise, but contract to deliver it, and pay the different du- 
ties at fl> nc deftined mart. To flicker the packages from the in- 
clemency oi the weather, a fmall complement of tents is provided, 
as it rarely happens that a kafilah halts at any inhabited place. A 
plentiful fupply of writer, and a plain for the accommodation of 
the cattle, is all that is fought for. The carriers fay alfo, that a 
plain more effectually fecures them againft^ theft. 

On the 23d, proceeded 9 coffes further into the foreft, and 
halted near a large water courfe. This day an occurrence hap- 
pened which involved me in a ferious difficulty. The intenfe heat 
of the weather, and the fatigue of walking over a tract of deep 
fand, induced me, after pafllng it, to indulge in my pipe. During 
this regale, which I enjoyed under the (hade of a tree, the kafilah 
had gone out of fight. The ground in front being thickly covered 
with leaves, no appearance of a road was difcernible } and my 
horfe, when I mounted, was fo much* alarmed, that he would not, 
but with great reluctance, move in any direction. Whether the 
animal, from any inftinctive power, perceived the embarraflment 
of our fituation, or that its organs of fmell were fenfible of the 
effluvia which is emitted from the body of moft wild beafts, I will 
not prerume to determine :. though I was induced to afcribe its 
agitation to the firft caufe, having been once placed in a fimilar 

B b 2 fituation, 


fituation, with the difference, that no animals of prey, or of the 
large fize, were in the neighbourhood. After traverfing the foreft 
in various directions without perceiving the appearance of tract or 
habitation, or the veftige of any creature, except great quantities 
of elephants dung, I, at length, fell into a narrow path, which 
leading through a long fpace of woody defart, brought me to a 
village j whence the people with much kindnefs conducted mc to 
our halting place. 

On the 24th, at Jumah, a few fcattered houfes — four cofles. 
This hamlet lies within a mile of the Ganges, which, there, has 
nearly a fouthern courfe, and is about two hundred yards broad ; 
with a depth of water from ten to fifteen feet. About half a mile 
below the place of paflage, is a bed of rocks, extending from the 
eaft fide more than half way acrofs the river, on which the ftream 
breaks with fome force. The Ganges doth not here, as in your 
more happy land, roll its tide through a country fpread with fertile 
plains and populous villages, whole inhabitants live in peace and 
plenty. Here, a thick gloomy foreft, tenanted only by the bcafts 
of the field, lkirts it on the* caftern fide i and on the other, an 
uncultivated flat, over-run with low wood. 

On the 25th, crofted the river at the ferry of Nackerghaut, 
which is about twelve miles above Hurdwar ; the kafilah being to 
remain fome days at Jumah, I quitted it, and, accompanied by 
the Kafhmirians, I joined a final! party of merchants carrying 
cotton to the town of Nhan. The officer ftationcd on the weftern 


Digitized by Google 


fide of the Ganges for the collection of cuftoms, laid me under a 
contribution of two rupees ; alledging, that as I feemed to travel 
much at my eafe, I muft be well enabled to pay that fum. It was 
to little purpofe urging that I did not poflefs any property on which 
duties could be collected, or the juftice of levying a tax on a tra- 
veller. My argument was held wholly inadmiflible, and that of 
the cuftom-houfe officer being fupported by a pat ty of match lock 
men, I gave up, with decent refignation, the unequal conteft, 
When the long roll of galling taxes impofed on other nations,' 
efteemed more enlightened and humane than the mountaineers of 
Siringnaghur, is confidered, we (hall probably not judge the meafure 
rigorous, which obliges thofe riding at their eafe to contribute to 
the relief of a ftate that affords a fafeguard to their perfons by its 
falutary government. 

On the 26th, arrived at the village of Khalfawala — feven 
cofTes. The kafilah halted this day on a pleafant green plain ad- 
joining to the village, and flcirted by a wood, through which a 
tranfparent ftream flowed in many a winding channel. From its 
alluring appearance, though the weather was cold, I was induced 
to bathe j and to prevent interruption, I fti ayed into the thickeft 
part of the w<x>d, which I found abounding in peacocks, and a 
variety of other birds, one of which refembled the common fowl,, 
but of a fmaller fize, and of very active flight. 

On the 28th, at Dayrah, the refidencc of the deputy of the 
Siringnaghur rajah. This fmall town, which is populous and 




neatly built, may be called the capital of the lower divifion * of 
Siringnaghur, which includes a fpace of level country lying between 
a chain of fcattcred hills on the fouth, and the larger range of 
northern mountains. The Sicqucs have an accefs 
into thefe parts through the fouthern hills, which are broken by 
ftnall valleys ; and, fearing no oppofition from Zabitah Khan, 
they can at pleafure penetrate into the lower diftricls of Siringna- 
ghur. The chief refides at a town bearing the common name of 
the territory, which lyes, I am informed, about one hundred miles 
to the north, and by the eaft of Lall Dong. The inactivity of 
the prefent rajah has enabled the Sicques to exact from this 
country a regular tribute.-f- Of what fuperior courage and re- 
fource was that chief of Siringnaghur, who, in defiance of Au« 
rungzebe, the moft powerful prince of his time, protected the fon f 
of Dara, brother of the emperor, and his deadly foe, regardlcfs of 
every menace. But he fell to the facra fames auri, the moft de- 
ftrucYive evil, my friend, which Pandora's box let loofe upon the 
fons of man. It hath often armed the fon againft the father, hath 
fown diflention in the marriage bed, and broken the tye of honour, 
and the bonds of friendfliip. 

To adjuft the account of the Siringnaghur cuftoms, the kafi- 
lah halted until the 1 5th, when we proceeded to Kheynfapoor — • 

• It is called the dant, or low country. 

t Said to be four thouCind rupees annually. 

\ See Bcrnicr's account of Sipahi Shcko's retreat into Siringnaghur. 


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ten cones.' At this place, I faw two Sicque horfemcn, who had 
been fent from their country to receive the Siringnaghur tribute, 
which is collected from the revenue of certain cuftom-houfes. 
From the manner in which thefe men were treated, or rather 
treated themfelves, I frequentiy wifhed for the power of migrating 
into the body of a Sicque for a few weeks — fo well did thefe 
cavaliers fare. No fooner had they alighted than beds were 
provided for their repofe, and their horfes were fupplied with 
green barley pulled out of the field. The kafilah travellers were 
contented to lodge on the ground, and exprefted their thanks for 
permiffion to purchafe what they required ; — fuch is the dif- 
ference between thole who were in, and thofe who were out of 

On the 6th of March crofled the Jumna, and halted on the 
•weftcrn banks — eight coffes. It flows with a clear ftream to 
the fouth-eaft, and has about the fame breadth with the Ganges.* 
Fifh abound in this part of the Jumna, as I myfelf faw j but I 
believe the adjacent inhabitants do not ufe any means of catch- 
ing them. No cultivation is feen in the vicinity of the Jumna, 
though a fpacious plain extends on the weftern fide, and might be 
watered without much difficulty from the river. The Siringna- 
ghur territory, which here terminates, is bounded on the north 
and the north-eaft, by the diftricls of independent Hindoo Rahahs ; 

• It is to be noticed, that I crofled thefe rivers at the fcafon of their lowcft ebb. 




on the fouth, by Oude; on the weft and north-weft, by the 
Jumna; and the fouth-weft, by the dominions of the Sicqncs. 
From Lall Dong to the Ganges, the country forms with little in- 
terruption a continued chain of woody hills. The elephant, 
which abounds in thefe forefts, but of a fize and quality inferior 
to that found in the Chittagong and Malay quarters, is here only 
valued for its ivory. From the Ganges to the Jumna, the /oad 
lies through an extcnfive valley, of a good foil, but thinly inha- 
bited, and interfperfed with wood. The food of the people is 
whtaten bread and pcafe, the latter being ufually made into a foup j 
and, believe me, that in the courfe of my life I never eat a meal 
with a higher relifh. Vigorous health, indeed, daily labour, and 
a clear air, will recommend to the appetite worfe things than 
wheaten cakes and peak- -foup. The attempt to afecrtain the re- 
venue of a country in which I have been fo curfory a fojourner, 
would be prefumptuous, I will therefore generally fay, that Sir- 
ingnaghur is computed to give an annual produce of about twenty 
lacks of rupees. The officer on the weftern fide of the Jumna, 
taxed me in the fum of two rupees j alledging, that being merely 
a paffenger, and unconnected with any traffic from which an 
advantage would arife to the country, that I was taxable in 
myfelf. The fame argument being held as at the Siringnaghur 
pafs, and eftceming myfelf fortunate at falling under no minuter 
notice, I paid the fine with pleafure. 

On the 7th, at Karidah — - eight cofTes : and on the 8th, at 


Digitized by G 


Coleroon — feven cofies, — hamlets of a few houfes. Here two 
Kafhmirians, a Sunaflee,* myfelf and fervant, quitted the kafilah, 
and on the oth, arrived at Nhan — eight cofles ; the refidence of 
the chief of a territory of the fame name ; and who on the day of 
our arrival, made a public entry into the town after a long abfence. 
A divifion of the Nhan country extends to the fouthward of the 
head of the Punjab, and bordering the country of the Sicques, they 
agreeably to a conduct obferved with all their weaker neighbours, 
took poffeflion of it The Rajah armed himfclf to recover the 
diftrifts in queftion, but after a defultory warfare in which he ac- 
quired much military credit, he was obliged to fue for peace ; nor 
were the conquered lands reftored until he confented to remit a" 
tribute of two thoufand rupees to a certain Sicque chief. This 
fum you will doubtlefs deem trifling, and it is fo in your country, 
where fpecie is plenty, and the mode of living conformably- 
luxurious and extravagant. But amongft thefe mountaineers, 
whofe manners are lude and fimple, who feek for little elfe than 
the necefiaries of life, which arc produced to them in great abun- 
dance, this amount is important, and to collect it, requires even 
oppreflive exertion. 

The inhabitants, and the foreign merchants of the town, were 
laid under a fevere contribution for the maintenance of this war 4 

• The name of a .Hindoo tribe, chiefly compofed of mendicants ; though I have 
fcen a Sunaflee conducting an cxtenfive commerce. 


r.YoL. I. Cc and 


and the chief having now difcovered the weight which the peopte 
can bear, it is probable that he will continue to reap the benefit of 
the import, though the caufe is removed. The Rajah- of Nhan 
made an entry into his capital, not as Alexander entered Babylon, 
but with fome dozen horfemen, forrily clad, and very flenderly 
mounted. Had they indeed been better equipped, both themfelves 
and horfcs would have fhewn to little advantage, after clambering 
tip at leaft fix miles of a deep mountain, on the fummit of which 
the fmall, though neat, town of Nhan ftands. This chief, a 
handfome young man, of a bright olive complexion, and taller 
than the middle fize, was drefled in a vcfl of yellow fiHc, and a 
red turban ; and he was armed with a fabre, a bow, and a quiver 
of arrows. Though he has made them groan with exactions, he 
is a great favourite of the people. But he is young and brave, 
and he liberally dilburfes what he extorts. The joy invariably ex- 
prefled by the crouds who came to congratulate his fafe return, 
gave me a fcnfible pleafure. They faluted him without noife or 
tumult, by an inclination of the body, and touching the head with 
the right hand; hailing him at the fame time their father and pro- 
tector. The chief, whilft pafling, fpoke to them in terms affec- 
tionate and interesting, which, like a ftroke of magick, feemcd in 
an inftant to erafe every trace of grievance. Such, were the advan- 
tages which pleafing manners and a liberality of temper, joined to> 
the other alluring qualities of a fotdier, gave to this prince ; and 
will, unfortunately for their fubjecls, give to every prince of fimilar 


Digitized by Google 


endowments on the face of the earth. Would it not be more 
productive of the welfare of mankind, that inftcad of thefc clin- 
quant virtues, a defpotic ruler poflelTed a difpofition thoroughly- 
impregnated with vice } that with his tyranny, he united cowardice 
and envy, avarice and arrogance ? The fubjects of fuch a prince, 
would be the fooner impelled to break the difgraceful yoke, and 
by a fuccefsful example, promote the general caufe of civil liberty. 

A species of fafcination I find has now caught me, and I 
cannot quit the ground without introducing on it, which I do 
with a profound reverence for his memory, and entreating forgivc- 
nefs of his made for daffing him in fuch company, the illuftriout 
Julius Csefar, who may be quoted to confirm the truth of the 
foregoing pofition. Cato's fuppof e d reflection on the character of 
this hero, concludes with imprecating his virtues, for they had 
ruined his country. No fact of ancient or modern hiftory, has, 
perhaps, given more literary pleafure, than the life of Carfar } nor 
perhaps is any record of the ancient annals better authenticated. 
Had that great man reftored with peace, the liberty of his country j 
had Caefar cherimed the fire of the Roman ienate, he would have 
had no parallel on earth. Yet, " if Ca?far did wrong, he fuf- 
" fered grievoully for it." — An exemplary humanity, of rare 
growth in his day, was the native virtue of Caefar, and is ever the 
genuine attendant of a great foul. The humane exercife of power 
throws even a luftre on characters that elfe would deferve our re- 
proach ; but it adorns the foldier with unfulhed radiancy, and 

C c 2 imparts 


imparts to his laurels a bloom, which otherwife are viewed with 
horror, and exhibit only a badge of cruelty and rapine. 

On the 12th, at noon, I left Nhan, and that evening halting 
at the village of Salcannah, ntuate at the bottom of the hill, and 
four codes diftant from the town. In this quarter 1 firft faw, fince 
I left Europe, the fir free,* and the willow, which, as in our 
country, delights in hanging over a ftream. From the top of the 
Nhan hill, the plains of Sirhend prcfent a wide profpeft to the 
fouth-eaft, fouth, and fouth-weft : the view to the northward is 
terminated at a (hort diftance by fnoWy mountains. Little danger 
being now incurred from travelling in fmall bodies, as the moun- 
tains compofe a barrier againft the depredations of the Sicques or 
other marauders, our party from this plad: to Bellafpour was 
fmall. To aflift my fervant I had entertained a Kafhmirian trader 
in fmall wares, who accompanied me from Niyeb Ghur * and he 
was at all times a ufeful and a pleafant companion. 

On the 13th. at Sudowra — twelve cofTes j a village on a high 
hill of ftcep afcent. The road this day led through a woody and 
mountainous country, abounding, we were told, with a variety of 
wild beafts. A tyger had newly marked our path with the im- 
prcflion of his feet, and being tlien informed that this creature al- 
ways attacks animals in preference to nien, I immediately dis- 
mounted, and led my poor little horfe. The tyger, and 1 believe 

, • That fpecics of it called the Scots fir. 


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generally, the feline fpecies, poflefs but a fmall (hare of courage* 
and fcldom openly feizes its prey > but, lurking in concealment, 
attacks by furprife, and if unfuccefsful Heals away into a hiding 
place without returning to the onfet ; and, in contradift motion, to 
the canine fpecics, whole great (hength lies in the jaw, the feline 
ftrike their prey with the fore feet and talons. It is faid that a 
tyger having once tailed human flefh, becomes fond of it, and 
gratifies his appetite when it can be done without encountering 
any confpicuous danger. Yet it would appear, that all animals 
have a dread of man, which proceeding from the novelty of his 
appearance, or perhaps fomc inftinctive fear of his powers of 
offence, prompts them, when not furious w ith hunger, to fliun 
die conteft. — This evening, I was comfortably lodged in the front 
of a Hindoo retail mop, where an excellent mefs of peafe and 
wheaten cakes was ferved up to us. Pray exculc me fur noting 
this domcftic concern, which is to me of gi cat moment ; for by 
fuch wholefome meals, my ftrength was unimpaired, and my daily 
progrefs made with vigour. Covered quarters during the night 
was what we anxioufly fought after, but did not Iways obtain. 
The Hindoos, though hofpitably difpoled to travellers, arc avcrfe 
to admitting Mahometans, whom they hold unclean, in 10 any part 
of their houfes. 

On the 14th, at Lnwafuh — fix colics ; — a few fcattetcxl 
houfes. This day's journey confuted in climbing ftecp moun- 
tains, and thoug'.i my little boric was as uctivc as a go; t, I was 



obliged, from the alrnoft perpendicular height, to walk the greateft 
part of the way. For the benefit of fuch travellers who may come 
within your knowledge, and be difpofed to purfue my track, you 
muft inform them that the fhop-keeper at Lawafah is a great 
rogue, a noify wrangler, and mixes a great quantity of barley 
with his wheat-meal. As he is the only man of his profefljon 
in the place, there is no remedy for the evil but laying in a ftock 
at Sudowra, where they will find honcft treatment, and lodging 
to boot. Though it is not very probable that this recommenda- 
tion will be of material ufe to the honeft man at Sudowra, yet I 
feel a pleafure in mentioning his goodnefs to me. 

On the 15th at Coultic — nine cofles ; — two or three Mat- 
tered houfes. The Nhan country is bounded here by the fmali 
diftricl of Bojepour, which depends on the Bellafpour chief. — On 
the i6tb, halted on the bank of a nulla — feven cofles. Met on 
the road a Kaflimirian family, confuting of a goldfmith, his wife, 
and fome children, who were travelling to fome town on the bor- 
ders of Thibet, where they intended to fettle. 

On the 17th, at Kunda, a fmall village — eight cofles, and 
about five miles to the north-weft of Durmpour, the refidence of 
the chief of a fmall diftrift, generally fubjeft to the authority of 
the Bellafpour government. At Durmpour I paid a duty of two 
rupees for pafling my horfe 

On the 13th, at Gowrah —nine cofles. I halted during the 
heat of the day near a water mill, the firft J had feen in India. 

- It was 

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It was conftraacd on the principle of the like machine in Europe, 
but of more fimple mechanifm and coarfer workmanfliip. About 
two o'clock in the morning, I obferved an eclipfe of the moon, 
the body of which continued partially fhaded for near two hours. 
In the evening, our little party went to a farmer's cottage, where 
we fohcited permiflion to lodge our baggage, and to fleep under 
one of his fticds. The farmer candidly faid, looking ftedfaftly in 
my face, which he fecmednot to like, that he was apprehenfive that 
an ou t - fide lodging would not fatisfy us. It was with much diffi- 
culty he would believe that we had fought his houfe only for flicker, 
and it was not until the Kaflimirian had (hewn him Tome fmail 
wares for fale, that we were fuffered to occupy the front of has 
houfe. The diftrias of Hundah and Gowrah, are denominated 
the Barrah Tukrah * being certain portions of territory bequeathed 
by a chief of Bcllafpour to his younger fon, fome fifty years ago. 
Thelc petty ftatcs are ill governed, and it is only among them that 
the traveller, from the Ganges to Kafhmirc, incurs the rilk of 
being pillaged. 

On the 19th, at the Village of Tayanaghur — ten coffes. On 
the 20th, at Bcllafpour — twelve coffes, the refidence of the Ranee 
or female ruler of the Kalour territory. This town, (lands on. the 
fcuth-ealt fide of the Setloud or Sutludge, the moft eafterly of the 
five rivers, from which the name of Punjah f is given to the tra& of 

• « 

• A term in the Hinduee, fignifying twelve portions, 
■f A Perlian word, fignifying five wateri, 

, country 


country extending from Sirhend to the Indus. The Setloud, a 
very rapid ftream, is at this place about one hundred yards broad. 
Bellafpour is a well built town, ahd exhibits a regularity not often 
feen in thefe parts. The ftreets are paved, though rather roughly ; 
and the houfes, conftructed of ftone and mortar, have a neat ap- 
pearance. Kalonr is bounded to the northward by the Kangrah 
• diftri&s } to the caftward by a large tract of country called Buf- 
feer ; to the fouthward by Nhan ; and to the weftward by the 
Punjab ; and its revenue is faid to amount to twelve lacks of 
rupees. On my arrival at Bellafpour, I found the Ranee engaged 
in a war with the chief of Kangrah, on the limits of whofe country 
her army was then encamped. It may not edify or perhaps enter- 
tain you to know the caufe of this fell difpute, which however 
had taken fuch pofleflion of the minds of the mountaineers, and 
to them was fo important an event, that they feemed to think the 
hills and forefts of Bellafpour the feat of univerfal war. The 
fiege of Troy, and the conflicts on the Scamander, would have 
appeared as mere Ikirntifhes to thefe fylvan heroes ; and they pro- 
bably would have allowed no other degree of comparifon, than 
that women were the caufe of them both. But as I my felf became 
involuntarily interefted in their ftory, and having 'little other 
matter to communicate, I am induced to intrude a -(ketch -of it on 
■your patience, 

To deduce this eventful matter ab ovo y I muft call your atten- 
tion to the Days of Acbar, who is faid to have been the firft Maho- 

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raetan prince who reduced the northern mountains of Hindoftan 
to the obedience of the empire. Towards the northern limit of 
Kalour, is a ftrong hold on an eminence, called the Kote Kan- 
grah, the reduction of which detained Acbar, who commanded the 
expedition in perfon, a whole year, according to the tradition of 
this quarter. To reward one of his officers who had fignalizeJ 
himfelf in this fcrvice, he beftowed on him the captured fort, with 
a confiderable fpacc of adjacent territory. The defendants of this 
chief who are of the Sheah's feci of Mahometans, continued in 
the poifeflion until the prefent period, when the Rajah of Kangrah* 
on fome pretence, laid the diftricts wafte, and befieged the fort. 
Unable himfelf to repel the Enemy, the Mahometan foliated the 
aid of the Bellafpour Ranee, who with the fpirit of a heroine, af- 
forded fpeedy and vigorous fuccour to her neighbour, whofe caufe 
Ihe has already revenged by plundering and deftroying almoft 
every village of Kangrah j the chief of which now vainly aflerts, 
that the Ranee, feeing his country deftitutc of defence, feized, 
under the colour of alTuting her ally, the occafion of augmenting 
her own power. 

Halted on the 21ft and 2zd, at Bellafpour. Thefe wars 
did not a little derange our meafure of progrefs, efpecially as there 
was attached to the Kangrah army, through which we mutt nc- 
ceflarily pafs, a body of Sicques, who had impreffed, with a lively 
terror, even this fequeftered region. The two KaQimirians, now 
Vol. I. D d my 


my only aflbciates, were averfe to any motion until we (hould be 
reinforced. After much entreaty they confented to accompany me 
to the Bellafpour camp, where the probability of meeting paflen- 
gers going to tlie northward, they were obliged to confefs, was 
greater than in the town. But to a rooted indolence, the common 
want of enterprize prefides over ah* the actions of an Indian ; and 
here let me obfcrve, that our pincipal fuperiortty over them, will 
largely confift in attacking this weak fide. The prompt decifiort 
of our councils, the vigour of action, muft in every eonteft with 
them command fuccefs. This constitutional inactivity and lan- 
guor of the mind, have been farther promoted by the creed of pre* 
deftination, and aftrology. A minute attention is (hewn by the 
natives of India to certain days, hours, and minutes. On the 
commencement of any fervice, or in the performance of even the 
ordinary duties of life, their conduct is regulated by the immediate 
period ; and fhould the calculator difcover a reluctancy, or defire 
of delay in his employer, w apprehend that his own reputation 
might fuffer in the event, he ufually lays a bar on the undertaking. 
Over fuch men what advantage do we not poffcfc ? Yet in fome 
of the late military tranfaclions of India, we have weakened our 
claim to thofe natural and acquired powers, which EnglUh fbldiers 
in moft of their actions have difplayed in this country. Do not mif- 
conftrue the tendency of this digreffion, and mark me as an abet- 
-tor of the incurfions and depredations whkh we are occafionally 


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*ifed to make on the lands of our neighbours. Our conduct to 
one * of them has been as unjuft as it was unwife, nor do I know 
whether to attribute the favourable conclufion of the event *f to 
good fortune, or to the folly of our enemies. 

On the evening of the 23d, crofled in a ferry-boat, the Setloud, 
a narrow deep and rapid river, full of windings, and halted at a 
fmall village oppofite to Bellafpour, though the diftance from the 
ferry was nearly two miles from the town. A Tumboo-fhall ka- 
filah had encamped on the north fide of the town on its way to 
Dchli and Lucknow, with the proprietors of which, or rather 
their agents, I formed an acquaintance ; and through their influence 
with the collector of the cuftoms I was permitted to pafs without 
obftacle. This afliftance was the more opportune, as the Bellaf- 
pour government is deemed jealous and oppreflive. The collector 
extended his favour even to a length that I had not expected, for 
he not only expedited my paflage through the Bellafpour diftricts, 
but gave me a recommendatory letter to his brother, who was the 
manager of the Kangrah cuftom houfe. The people of the Tum- 
boo kafilah were defirous of knowing my ftory, and you alfo, per- 
haps, would with to be informed of the prefent one, certain parts 
of which, on hearing that the Turkilh language was fpoken by a 
perfon of the party, I compiled for the ufe of the day. God only 

* The Mahrattas 

+ The convention of VVargaum, which covered us with difgrace. 

D d 2 knows, 

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knows, my friend, what a varied multiplicity of fictions I have 
formed in the courfe of tlm journey : and I have to fupplicate hi* 
pardon for the fabrication, as well as to hope for your acquiefcence 
in the neceflity. The tenor of my ftory fets forth, that I was by 
birth a Turk, and had come when young to India, where I was 
taken into the houfc of a perfon of diftin&ion who had brought 
me up. That from my long refidence in India I had forgotten 
my native language, and that my profeflion had been chiefly tha-t 
of a foldier, which quitting on a difguft, I had collected my little 
property and become a travelling merchant. The doty, not very 
complex, poflefi'cd plaufibility fufficicnt to procure common belief, 
and I myfelf had entered fo warmly into its fpirit, that I began 
to believe it. I mult here inform you, that having been feen two 
or three times writing on the road, 1 was told by one of the pa£ 
lengcrs that it was an European cmtom, and a very ufelefs one. 
The remark alarmed me, but I told him without much hefitation, 
that I had been always accuftomed to write my current expences, 
Ihat at the end of the year I might afcertain the amount, and not 
exceed my income. My remarks were ufually noted in a rude Per- 
fian character, but whilft I was writing an Englifli letter from 
this place, a Kammirian who was fitting near me, and who had 
formerly ierved on board or.e of our country mips, obferved, that 
I wrote from the left to the right in the European manner : but on 
being told that the Turks ufed the fame method, he fcemed fatis- 
fied. From an inattention to one of the forms of my new cha- 

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racier, inftead of fitting down, as the Afiatics invariably do in the 
performance of urinal evacuation, I ufed occafionally to ftand up- 
right j and being feverely reprehended for this uncleanlinefs, I al- 
ledged that the habit was not uncommon amongft foldiers, who 
from the hurry of fervice, and their diflipated courfe of life, 
make many deviations from the rules of decorum. But the want 
of penetration, or the good humour in which we lived together, 
has prevented my companions from feeing through my difguife, 
which I now entertain fanguine hopes of preferving to the end of 
my journey. 

I am, dear Sir, 

Your's, &c. &q> 


ii:t&! 'tis i.& .v.'.i.&.J) °)o v/iiii n;oi'i vn.' : • 


"}'.> hu> «>.• -zMV r JW\j lo.-ii : *;i • 
~ iff % • ' r* T 'Vi 

' , ,!•; T 

.3*' V. / ' 

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Nourpour, 1783, 


On the 22d of laft month, I had the plea- 
fure of defcribing to you my journey from Lall Dong to Bellaf- 
pour, and I can now with plcafure fay, that unhurt by the Sic- 
ques, tygers, or thieves, I am fafely lodged in Nourpour, the prin- 
cipal town of a diftrift of the fame name. From the weftcrn bank 
of the Setloud, we proceeded on the 24th of March to the village 
of Comour Hattee, eight cofTes. An Hattee, which in the language 
of this country fignifics retail fliop, affords the beft accommodation 
for a traveller, and I always endeavoured to make one my halting 
phce. There I procured wheat, wheat-meal, peafe, and ghee,* of 
which my common fare is compofed, and by the applying in civil 
terms, the Ihop keeper commonly indulged me with the ufe of the 
front part of his fliop. 

On the 25th, in the Bdlafpour army • — ten cofTes. It will not 
demand the pen of Homer to defcribe the different powers which 

• Butter boiled, in which ftatc it is always ufcJ for culinary purpofci in India. 



formed this camp; their ftrength, the names and characters of 
their leaders, or the fituation of the ground which they occupied : 
fufHcc it to fay, that about 300 horfes, and 8000 foot-men, armed 
with match-locks, fwords, fpeafs, and clufrs, were huddled together 
ou two fides of a hill, in a deep ftate of confufion and filth. Having 
refuted for the fpace of four months in this fpot under fmall (heds 
made of the boughs of trees, you will naturally fuppofe, that the 
effects refulting from the fituation could neither have been plea- 
fant or falutary. In all, were four very ordinary tents, one of which 
was occupied by the generaliflimo, a brother, and I .believe an elder 
one, of the late chief of Bellafpour ; (or the order of fucceffion in the 
line of primogeniture, is not at this day ftrictly adhered to in India, 
either amongft the Hindoos, or Mahometans. This perfoiiage, 
from age, being incapable of performing any active duty, had ap- 
pointed a younger brother to the executive command. The Ranee, 
with her fon, a youth of about ten years of age, and a favourite 
SunnafTcc, had retired during the war to an adjacent fort, where 
me directed the general operation of the war. Having entered thus 
far into the hiftory of Bellafpour, I will proceed to explain forae 
parts of the ftory of this lady, which as they tend to place female 
conduct in a diftinguimed point of view, I embrace the occafion 
with pleafure. And here permit me to declare with a fervent fin- 
cerity, and an honourable fenfe of the dignity of character to 
which I afpire, that I am a zealous friend of women, and that 
as far as the offering of my mite will contribute to their aid, or to 

a difplay 

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«i 7 

a difplay of their various merit, it lhall be held forth with a wil- 
ling hand. 

Quitting thefe encomiums on myfelf rather than on the fex, I 
am to inform you that the Bellafpour Ranee, on the death of the 
late chief, which happened about three or four year ago, declared 
herfelf the guardian of her fon, and regent of the country. She 
was oppofed in this purpofe by her hufband*s brother, the pcrfon 
who now commands the army ; and (he had alio to combat the 
many difficulties incident in this country to her lex, the moft em- 
barraffing of which was a preclufion from public appearance } yet 
baffling every attempt made to fubvcrt her authority, me firmly 
cftabliflied herfelf in the government.* The event of the Ranee's 
fuccels, brought on the confinement of her competitor j but after 
a fliort time, during which he experienced a lenient treatment, he 
was releafed. This dame of fpirit, who hath evinced ftrong traits 
of a difpofi tion fitted for conducting either military or civil fchemes 
and who hath hitherto been fortunate in them, it at this day en- 
thralled by the force of love. Whether this paffion is to be claffed 
amongft the alloys of our virtues, according to the do&rine of 
the moft rigid moralifts, or whether it heightens die luftre of thofe 

.)Tv*3 .» WV"- - ... * V'. * . * .."**'',■■ 0 .3 t-' • ' tt\ 

has already been obferved in the letter on Hindoo mythology, that amongit 
a woman on the demife of the hufband becomes an inefficient member in 
ly, but in the prcfent day this ordinance is often over-ruled by the intervention 
of power, wealth, or intrigue. In this note it may not be improper to mention, that 
the Hindoos ufe the epithet, H widowed," as dtferiptive of futility, or of any con- 
temptible and nugatory a&. 

Vol. I. E e already 


already pofleffed, and even creates good qualities in us, as the ele- 
gant Yorick has advanced, are questions . fubmitted, with a due 
deference to tlie intricacy of the fubjecT, to thofe who are (killed 
in the extenfive pallion of love. The object of this lady's favour 
I faw, and the choice fiie has made is a proof of good tafte. He 
is a young handfome Hindoo, of a religious tribe, who, contrary 
to the ufage of his feci, which is founded on rules almoft as fcvere 
as thofe of the Carthufians, drefics gayly, and in the Mahometan 
fafliion. From a certain levity, though politencfs of manners, 
let oft" by the delicate fancy of his apparel, you at the firft glance 
pronounce him a favourite of the women. Such arc the changes 
which love can produce, even amongft a people who oWerve their 
religious ordinances with a fcrupuloufnefs irrcconcileable to com- 

» ■ • ■ 

mon fenfc, and which in fome inflances border on grofs abfurdity.* 
Thus much for the Ranee of Bellafpour, to whom be all fuccefs ! 

I now learned that my progrefs towards the Kangrah army, 
would without the prote&ion of an efcort, be attended with 
much rifle. In order to procure fo eflcntial an accommodation I 
waited on the commander in chief, then fitting under a banian tree, 
and attended by his principal officers, the greater part of them clad 
in native buff. Some new levies were pafling in review before 
him, that had come in from the country, or rather the woods ; 

* In the neighbourhood of Benares is a f C a of religious Hindoos, who it is faid for- 
bear making any ufe of their hands, even on toe moll neceflary occafions ; but arc fed 
and affiftcd by others. 


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for they bore a ftrong refernblance to the defcription given in hea- 
then ftory of the fatyrs, fawns, and other branches of the fylvan 
race ; nor do I think that all the powers of a Pruflian drill fer- 
jeant, extenfive aa they are, could have impreffed on them a com- 
petent knowledge of military ducipline. On approaching the 
chief, I made hira an offering of a rupee, laid on the corner of my 
veft. You will be pleafed to notice, that the piece of money is^ 
not to be placed on the naked hand, but on a handkerchief, or 
fome part of the garment held out tor that purpofc ; and though 
the fuperior (hall be difpofed to favour the client, yet from mo- 
tives of generality, or an attention to his condition, it often hap- 
pens, that he does nol take the offering, but touches it with his 
finger. The honour is then fuppofed to be conferred, and the hope 
of obtaining^ protection or a(Bftance, if fought for, b entertained. 
The chief received me with civility, and complied with the- wqnefl; 
that o»r party might be permitted to. accompany the-firft meffenger 
who fHould be difpatched into the Kangrah camp j arid lie alto in. 
timated, that fome letters which were preparing, would foon be 
forwarded. Pie looked obliquely at my offering, which he touched, 
but would not receive. A day or. two afterwards, I difcovered this 
mountaineer to be compofed of the fame materials, which with 
few deviations form the common difpofition of the natives of India. 
Qn vhlting him a fecond time, attended only by the cotewaul,* 

• An officer of police. 
E e 2 



{alfo the afting mafter of ceremonies), I was told that I might 
prefent my offering, which being an Alum Shahee rupee,* a coin 
of rather an inferior value in this quarter, I was received with a 
frown, and my money underwent a ftrict examination. Would 
you not imagine that I had been bargaining with a Jew pedlar, 
inftead of conferring with the chief of a country ? Though I was 
mortified at beholding among us fo glaring a meannefs and want 
of decorum, yet as a trait of national character was difclofed, I 
received fome fatisfa&ion in obtaining fo unequivocal a teftimony 
of it. In further proof of the inconfiftency of conduct, as well as 
a want of fortitude in the people of this country, I am induced to 
relate to you an event, (though foreign to the immediate purpofe 
of this letter) that came within my own knowledge. At the time 
when the Mahometans were driven from Kattuck, the chief of 
that territory fled to Bengal, where having expended the amount 
of the treafure and moveables that had been preferved, he went to 
the coaft of Coromandel, and was received into the lift of pen- 
fioners maintained by the Navaub of the Camatic. During the 
regular payment of the allowance, this man enjoyed eaie ; and by 
the (hew of a palanquin, and a refpeftable retinue, he maintained 
t certain ftatc. The provifion which the Navaub at that time 
found it expedient to make for penfioners of a higher order, caufed 
a deduction from the ftipend of his Kattuck dependant, who thea 

• A rupee »f the prefent Feign. 


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laid down his palanquin, and purchafed a fmall horfe. This was 
doubtlcfs a mortifying degradation ; but the cup of his forrow wa* 
not yet full : for on a greater reduction, and at length, a total 
abolition of the penfion, this poor man lofing fight of the character 
he had fupported, and blinded by a vanity which difcouraged all 
indubious exertion for a livelihood, became notorioufly addicted 
to fraud, and petty-thefts i and was fcarcely faved from an igno- 
minious end. I have quoted thefe examples, thinking them more 
conclufive in conveying to you a knowledge of character, than 
any fpeculative obfervation. But when the mind at an early 
period, is not accuftomed to behold and admire examples of 
integrity and honor, or taught to Ihun with horror and contempt 
the habits of vice ; on the contrary, when the inftru&ion given 
to youth, tends to appreciate the duties of life by the performance 
of futile ceremonies, and the ftudy of legends pregnant with 
fable, or violent prejudices, we are not to wonder at fuch acts of 

The flies tormented me fo much in the Hellafpour army, that 
I could not but with difficulty fecure my food from their vile at- 
tacks. A certain quantity of poifon I believe is contained in the 
body of an Indian fly, for on fwallowing it, a naufea and vomiting 
almoH: immediately fucceed. I had imagined that the ficknefs 
might proceed from the motion of the infect in the ftomach, but 
on examining one after it had been difcharged, I perceived it with* 
•ut life, though but a very fhort time deprived of its natural air. 




The intenfe heat of the ftomach indeed, muft fpeedily caufe the 
fuffocation of fo fmall an animal. 

Ou r fituation in the Bellafpour camp was difgufting and in- 
commodious. The heat was in the extreme, with a compound of 
fmells arifing from the filth of the people, that groffly tainted the 
air : and I became fo anxious to efcape, that I had determined to 
embrace any mode of operation which might lead to a change of 
quarters. This eagernefs had alraoft produced a meafure, which 
probably would have caufed a material failure of my plan. Two 
mefiengers who were to convey propofals of peace to the Kan- 
grah camp, promifed to conduct our party thither in fafety, and I 
had refolved to commit myfelf to their charge, though much opr 
pofed by ray aflbciates, who decidedly laid, that thefe men would 
betray us. The chief's chobedar,* a brother Mahometan, alfo 
endeavoured to impref* me with an ill opinion of thefe meffengera. 
Had they formed any fcheme of mifchjef,it: was happily fruflrrated 
on the evening previoufly to our intended departure, by the arrival 
of a drove of afijes, laden with iron, who were purfuing our route. 
On the 29th, the joint party moved, and had arrived at the boun- 
dary of Bellafpour, eight miles diftant from the camp, when our 
troubles came thick upon us. Two of the Kangrah horfemen ap- 
peared in front, and palling me, went towards the rear, where 
they plundered the ironmongers to the amount of one hundred 

• A pcrfon who carries a film flick before men in high ftation. 


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rupees, which is accounted a large fum in thefe parts. They 
feized alfo on a Kafhmirian, who was lagging behind, and were m 
the acl: of (tripping him, when he loudly cried out, which was 
not true, that he was my fervant, and that I was a perfon of fomc 
diftinftion. This intelligence induced the horfemen to follow me; 
but on approaching, one of them obferved that I had the appear- 
ance of a bulla audimec* and fhould not fuffer any moleilation j 
that only ftragglers, and fmgle travellers fell under their notice. 
Seeing them difpofed to this civil treatment, I procured the Kafh- 
mirian's releafe, as alfo that of my own fervant, who had come 
up during the parity, and had been likewifc taken into cuftody. 
h was, I believe, a fortunate event for the prifoncrs that I re- 
turned, for our cavaliers were then in quefl: of prey, nor did they 
feem nice in the diltinclions of peribns ; ' for whilft I remained* 
ibme ft ray paflTengers were laid under contribution, from one of 
whom, an afs driver, they took a pair of ihoes. We were in- 
formed that two hundred Sicqucs who had been lately entertained 
in the Kangrah fcrvice, would foon appear. Aware of the licen- 
tious manners of the difciples of Nanock,-f efpecially when em- 
ployed in foreign fervice, I would then willingly have facrificed a 
moiety ot my property to have had the other fccured. There was 
no other remedy than afluming the look of confidence and eafe, 

• la the Hindoftany language, any perfon above the ordinary claft, is fo de- 

+ The founder of the Sicques. 



which, Heaven knows, ill correfponded with my heart : fo pufhing 
my horfe into a quick trot, I was fpeedily conveyed into the midft 
of this formidable corps, who received me very attentively, but 
without offering any violence. Imagining our approach to have 
been that of the enemy, the Sicques were preparing for the fight, 
to which they loudly exclaimed, in the tone of religious ejacula- 
tion, that their prophet had fummoned them. In token of re- 
Ipecl, I had difmounted, and was leading my horfe, when a Sicque, 
a fmart fellow, mounted on a active mare, touched me in pafling. 
The high mettled animal, whether* in contempt of me or my 
horfe, perhaps of both, attacked us fiercely from the rear, and in 
the aflault, which was violent, the Sicque fell to the ground. 
The aclion having commenced on the top of a hill, he rolled with 
great rapidity to the bottom of it, and in his way down, left be- 
hind him his matchlock, fword, and turban : fo compleat a de* 
rangement I feared, would have irritated the whole Sicque body ; 
but on evincing the (hew of much forrow for the difafter, and 
having afliduoufly afliftcd in inverting the fallen horfeman with 
his fcattered appurtenances, I received general thanks. 

My good fortune, which had this day repelled a feries of 
perils, conveyed me in fafety to the camp of the Kangrah, or as 
he is often called, from a more ancient name of his country, 
the Katochin chief. We regaled ourfelves this evening with 
great joy, having fuffered from hunger as well as fatigue, though 
we had only travelled about fixtcen or feventeen miles. A fmall 


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body, chiefly of horfe, was ftationed at this camp j the greater 
part of the forces under the command of the Rajah, being em- 
ployed in the fiege of Kotc Kangrah. The common road to Jumbo 
from hence, lay through Nadone, the principal town in the Kan- 
grah country, and through the diftrift of Huriepour ; but thefc 
places being then overrun by the Sicques, we were obliged to de- 
viate from the ufual track, and proceed to the weft ward. It is to 
be feared that thrfe turbulent mountaineers, the difturbers of their 
folitary abode, will ftir up fuch commotions in their land, as to 
wholly (hut up this road, the only fecure one from India to Kafli- 
mire, or render the paflage fo precarious, that no advantage will 
com pen fate the rifle.* 

On the 30th, we moved, and joining the kafilah of the iron 
merchants again, accompanied it to Sooree — fix cofles : — a fmall 
village, of which mod of the carriers were inhabitants. The'hak 
was made at this village from a defire of the carriers to fee their 
families, for it was at the diftance of a full day's journey out of 
their road. To the eaftward of Sooree, which lies in a valley, wi 
crofted a ridge of high and fteep mountains. 
• On the 31ft, at Bompal — four cofTes : — a fmall hamlet fitu- 
ated on an eminence. This day's journey was made fliort for the 
accommodation of the iron merchants, who went to the Kangrah 
camp to attempt the recovery of the property which the Sicques 

• This apprehcnfion has been fincc verified. 

Vol. L F f 



had plundered ; but they returned without redrefs, and now feemed 
anxious to leave the country j as inftead of procuring a reftitution 
or payment, farther demands had been made. All this night, I 
was expofed to a continued and copious rain — and here let me 
obferve, with fincere thanks for the blefling of a hale conftitution, 
that though I have, in the courfe of this journey, endured much 
Severity of weather, my health has hitherto received no injury. 

A continuance of the rain detained us at Bompal until the 
ad of April, when we arrived at Chumbah — eight coffes : — a 
fmall village, depending on the chiefship of Jeflbul. At a fhort 
diftance from Bompal, we were flopped by the collector of Na- 
done, who had come three miles from his houfe, in defiance of the 
troubled ftate of the country, to receive from us a toll duty of a 
few pence. At about mid-way on the right hand fide of the road 
is feen a place of Hindoo worfliip, at the foot of which runs the 
Byas Gunge,* with a rapid ftream of about one hundred yards 
broad, f A great part of the road from Bompal to Chumbah lay 
through a valley, watered by the Byas, on the north fide of which 
is feen the level and fertile diftrifts of Huriepour. The territory 
of Kangrah, or Ktochin, is limited on the north, and north-weft 
by Huriepour j on the eaft by Chumbay ; on the fouth by Ka- 
lour j and on the weft by the Punjab. The ordinary revenue, 

* The fecond of the Punjab rivers from the Eaftward. 
t The current runs to the left. 


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eftimated at levcn lacks of rupees, has beert much diminifhed by 
the chief's alliance with the Sicques, who fpread dcftruclion wher- 
ever they go. Thefe marauders are now afting the part of the 
man whom fable reprefents to have been invited by the horfe, to 
aid his conteft with the boar ; and you know the ufes to which 
the thoughtiefs horfe was applied, when victory was decided in fa- 
vour of the combined forces. 

This day, our little party which had been joined in the Bel- 
lafpour camp by the Kafhmirians, refolved, from a dread of tht 
Sicques, who had inverted the common track, to quit the kafilab, 
and through detached paths endeavour to reach Jumbo. A native 
trader of India, it is to be obferved, holds his time in fmall efti- 
mation, and would rather halt for two or three months, than incur 
«ven a common rifle. 

On the 3d, at Dada — ten coffes ; dependant on the chief of 
Sebah. From a ftream running through the village, we procured 
fome excellent fifh, of the fize and fomething of the tafte of trouts. 
This diftricl, by its approach to the head of the Punjab, lies 
wholly at the mercy of the Sicques, who are I think the plaineft 
dealers in the world. The fort of Sebah,* ftanding pleafantly 011 
the brink of a rivulet, lay on our road and in patting it, I faw 

• Situate about three cofles to the fouth-weft of Dada, and the only fortified rcfi- 
d?ncc I have feen among the mountains. The vicinity of the Punjab bat perhaps in- 
duced the mountaineers to fortify this place. 

. F f z 



two Sicque cavaliers ltrike a terror into the chief and all his 
people, though (hut up within their fort. They had been fent 
to collect the tribute which the Sicques have impofed on all the 
mountain chiefs from the Ganges to Jumbo ; and, offended at the 
delay of the payment, thefe high fpoken men were holding to the 
affrightened Hindoos, that ftyle of language, which one of our 
provincial magi urates would direct at a gipfey, or fturdy beggar, 
indeed, my friend, no ordinary exertion of fortitude, no common 
ihare of philanthropy is required, to wield with temper the rod of 
power } which, from the frailty of his nature, man is ever Inclined 
to ufe with feverity. Yet furely when he looks into himfelf, lie 
Fill fee many a ftrong reafon to qualify its ftroke. From a fpirit 
of impatience, which having lonj actuated me, I am induced to 
think is innate, I quitted my companions, and going about a mile . 
in front, fell in with a horfeman, who had much the appear- 
ance of a freebooter ; but being well armed, and evidently the 
ftronger man, I did not apprehend any rilk from a rencounter. 
Seeing me a flranger, and from the quality of my equipment, a fit 
fubject for plunder, he flopped me,, and in a peremptory manner, 
afked my occupation, and place of abode. My anfvvers were 
neither explanatory nor gracious,, and my departure abrupt, though 
he had exprefled a ftrong defire of farther communication ; and 
feemed offended at the unconcern of my deportment. About a 
i quarter of a mile farther on, I met a Sicquc horfeman, well armed, 
who was evidently in feaich of adventure. After reconnoitring 


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me attentively, and apprehending, I imagine, that a contcft would 
be of doubtful event, for my fwoid was long, and my countenance, 
by the air I had aflumed, fierce, he politely faluted me, and palled. 
The perfon whom I firft faw, had halted, and on the junction of 
the Sicque, a council was held by them on the fubjecT: of my 
moveables j the refult of which was to return and take them from 
me. My companions who gave me this information came up 
while thefe men of the blade were communing on the plan of at- 
tack, and an eclaircifiement took place. They difcovered that 
thefe footmen, four in number, were aflbciates of him* whofe pro- 
perty they intended to invade ; and naturally concluded, that how- 
ever decided the odds of two to one might have been, fo great an 
additional ftrength to our party, would manifeftly turn the chances ; 
and, fwayed probably by this forcible argument, they gave us no 

On the 4th at Tulwara, — ten cofles } a village in the diftricl 
of Dutar, where the Sicque chief has erected a fmall fort, and 
holds the adjacent territory. The country to the fouthward now 
aflumed a level afpect, which to me had an efFeft inexpreflibly 
pleafing ; for my eye had long been difgufted, and, I may fay, 
imprifoned, by mountain piled on mountain, till the higheft pierced 
the clouds. The diftricl of Dutar, or Dutarah, extends on the 
interior fide of the Punjab hills, through which our late fouthcra 
inclination had penetrated. In this day's journey, our party was 
reduced to the Kafhmirian trader and myfelf j three Kaflimii ians, 



who had joined oar party in the Bellafpour camp, went on before, 
and my fcrvant lagged behind. In the evening, having reached 
the bottom of a hill, we obferved a body of horfemen defending 
in our road. The fight of thefe men, who were immediately 
known to be Sicques, gave a ferious alarm ; and on their near ap- 
proach, I depofitcd, unnoticed by my companions, my little pro- 
perty of bills and cafh in an adjacent bufli. But we had formed 
an unjuit opinion of thete cavaliers j and I am to think myfelf 
Angularly fortunate, in being enabled in two inftances to place 
their conduit in a favourable point of view. This party, con- 
fining of about two hundred, many of whom were Mahometans* 
was then marching into the Hurriepour diftrict. Summoning an 
affected compofure of countenance, we affected to fmoke our pipes, 
from which fome of the Mahometans took a whiff en paffant, and 
at the fame time gave us an affurance of protection againft any ill 
defigns of their aflbciates j for notwithstanding the looks we had 
borrowed, they mud have feen much embarraffment in them. 
After their departure, I took my valuables out of the bufli without 
the obfervance of my companion, who was tranfportcd with joy at 
the efcape, fwearing, by his beard, that on reaching our evening 
quarters, he would offer up to Mahomet, or to his national faint 
Mucdoom Saib, two-pennyworth of brown fugar, in thankfgiving 
for the extraordinary prcfervation. We met many of the Sicque 
ftragglers, who are always the moll mifchievous ; thefe we directed 
to fpecdily join their companions, who, we faid, had ftrictly en- 

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joined us to give fuch directions j and this pretended mcflage gave 
us fome credit ; for feeing we had not been plundered by their 
party, they followed the fame meritorious example. 

A«*h op- keeper accommodated us with a convenient lodging 
at Tulwara, where, being joined by my fervant, who had likewife 
been involved in the dangers of the day, though he had carefully 
prcferved the remains of the fifti that had been procured at Dada, 
a fumptuous feait was ferved up, and joyoufly participated. The 
truth of this remark will be readily acknowledged by thofe, who, 
from the like adventures, have reached in the evening a fafe re> 
treat. My friend, who faithfully performed the tenor of his pro* 
mife, reprobated iny infenfibility of the providential interpofition 
that had been made in our behalf. It was in vain to urge the 
merits of internal prayer, or to aflert, that I had already offered 
unfeigned thanks for our efcape, which I trufted would not be 
the lefs acceptable from the want of fugar. This being a doctrine 
wholly repugnant to his creed, which exifted only in noify and 
oftentatious ceremony, I drew on myfelf a further fevere reproach. 

On the 5th at Badpour — feven coffes: a populous village in 
the Nourpour district. About two coflTes to the eaflward of Bad- 
pour, we eroded at the Rhay Ghaut, or Puttun,* in a ferry-boat, 
the Byas Gungah, and came into the Jumbo road, which in this 
quarter has not yet experienced the depredation of the Sicques. 

• The name of a ferry in fome parts of ihc Punjab. 




On the 6th, at Gungatau — ten cofies. In the paflfage of a 
rivulet near this village, the hoife, in fuddenly flopping to drink, 
threw me headlong into the water, where among the reft of my 
chattels, a bill on Jumbo was thoroughly drenched : nor tos this 
the firft injury it had received. 

On the 7th, at Nourpour j the reftdence of the chief of a dif- 
tricl of the fame name. This town fituate on the top of a hill, 
which is afcended by ftone fteps, has the appearance of opulence 
and induftry. Towards the fouth-eaft the country is open and of 
a pleafant afpeel, to which a winding ftrcam of fine water gives 
additional beauty. Mountains that have already made my eyes 
ach, contract the view to the weft and north ; but thefc have their 
ufes j and having experienced an eflential one, not to give it a 
place would be ungenerous. The heat of the fun now growing 
intenfe would have been feverely felt, had not the wind which came 
from the north-weft received a cool refrefhing quality from the 
fnows which on that quarter cover the hills ; and had it not been 
for a like favourable fituation, the refidence in the Bellafpour 
camp, the remembrance of which makes me ftiudder, might have 
proved fatal to us. 

On a plain adjacent to the town of Nourpour, was encamped 
a Jumbo kafilah, chiefly the property of Sunaflees,* and configncd 

* Though this feci, conformably to the tenets of the! r doctrine, ought to renounce 
or never engage in the affairs of the world, yet many of its members have become 
merchants, foldicrs, and atefmcn. 


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to the Dehli market. From thefe people I learned, that the chief 
of Jumbo was much embarraiTed in his finances, from a deftru&ive 
war he had entered into with the Sicques : that to raife fupplies 
he ha'd levied a general contribution on the inhabitants of the 
city ; and that his exactions had induced many of the principal 
merchants to abandon the place. The Sanaflees had employed in 
their fervice two or three Kafhmirians, who are men of an uni- 
verfal occupation, and endowed with unwearied patience and acti- 
vity in the caufe of gain. They told me that I fliould incur a ma- 
nifeft rifle in going to Jumbo, at a time, when the appearance of 
perfons of any property, attracted the notice of government : an 
information then more alarming, as my bufinefs at Jumbo required 
a perfonal attendance. Whilft I am writing of Nourpour, it may 
not be fuperfluous to mention, that a refpe&ablc merchant named 
Daud Khan, a native of the Punjab, rcfidcs in that town. He 
had lived many years at Jumbo, but having felt the oppreflion of 
that government, he has taken refuge in Nourpour, where he en- 
joys, with a moderate fecurity of property, the benefit of a fine 
air and a plentiful country ; and mould any of our countrymen 
come this way in the Mahometan character, they may be confi- 
dently allured of deriving conveniency, from an acquaintance with 
Daud Khan. 

On the 8th, halted. On the oth, at the village of Bunguree — 
eight cofles. My fervant, from a cold and a constitutional weaknefs in 
his breaft, which he faid had long afflicted him, was this day fcarccly 
Vol. I. G g able 


able to walk. I am now fearful that the burthen he was loaded 
with, was too heavy a one, and I am alfo to accufe myfcif of not 
alleviating its weight, by an cxercife of thole offices of kindnefi, 
which the law of humanity, as well as the ufages of fervkudc, 
efpecially in the Afiatic world, obliges a mafler to fhew his fervant, 
the more fo if he is a good one ; and to fay that this follower of my 
fortunes was not a good fervant, would bean unworthy attempt to 
exculpate, at the expence of his character, my frequent neglecr. 
But mould I ever be enabled to recompence his worth, the adt mall 
be claffed among thofe of my belt deeds. I ufed to fortify my oc- 
cafioual diflatis faction at him, by enlarging too rigoroufly on the 
petulance of his temper ; but I hold the reafon no longer valid, nor 
will it atone for the compunction I feel, when I recall to my mind 
the many affectionate fervices which the honeit fellow performed 
in the courfe of a laborious journey. 

The diftricrs of Nourpour on the north, are bounded by the 
river Rawee ; on the eaft by the Chambay * country ; on the w eft 
by fome fmall Hindoo diftricts, lying at the head of the Punjab, 
and by the river Byas i and on the fouth by Huriepour. The re- 
venues of Nourpour arc calculated at four lacks of rupees, and it 
would feem that it enjoys a ltatc of more internal quiet, is lefs mo- 
lefted by the Sicques, and governed more equitably than any of 
the adjacent territories. 

• A mountainous territory of large extent. 


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On the 10th, at PlafTee — ten cofics : — a fmall village in the 
Biflbuly diftrift. About eight miles to the north-weft of Bun- 
guree, and oppofite to the fort of Biflbuly, eroded the Rawec,* 
which is about one hundred and twenty yards in breadth, and very 
rapid. In the ferry-boat were two Sicques going to the fort, of 
which, a detachment they belonged to, hal taken pofTcflion, in 
confequence of being called in to the afliftance of the Biflbuly 
chief. Though this be the invariable rcfult of every connection 
made with the Sicques, the infatuated mountaineers never fail to 
feek their aid when engaged in war. A bordering chief had in- 
vaded the Biflbuly diftri&s, plundered the inhabitants, and burned 
their villages, before any oppofition was made. The Sicques were 
called in to repel the enemy, and defend the fort of Biflbuly ; but 
after performing the required fcrvice, they became pleafcd with 
their new fituation, and refufed to relinquifh it. 

A c^uicK progrefs through this country, and avoiding the 
track of the Sicques, were ftrongly, though unneceflarily, recom- 
mended to us. The boatman at the ferry of Biflbuly, though a 
brother Mahometan, made an exorbitant demand of hire, which 
was confiderably leflcned by the interference of the Sicque horfe- 
men, who faw the impofition, and had only to make known their 
will to effedr obedience. The journey of this evening, folitary and 
dreary, g-ive a wrong bent to every fp;ing of the imagination, 

• The Ra.vec is the C«nt. J Punjab tivcr, and runs near thj city of Lahore. 

G g 2 which 


which fullenly refufed to receive one chearful or pleafing 'ulet. If 
fuch did begin to (hoot forth, the profpect. of a deferted village, a 
dcfolate country, immediately deftroyed it, and introduced in its 
Head, thofe pregnant with the horrors and miferies of war. Great 
Cod ! that the common evils of life fo abundantly heaped on our 
heads, mould not be felt as already too grievous, without the wilful 
encounter of additional mifchiefs ! This propenfity in the nature 
of man, indicates a difpofition at once deftrudtive of the purpofes 
which he fcems defigned to execute, and difgraceful to the intel- 
lects he fo amply poMlfles. 

An obliging houfe-keeper in the village of Plaflee, accommo- 
dated me this evening more agreeably than I could have expected. 
His little tenement was compofed of materials that had refifted the 
late conflagration of the country, and he had, with his family, re- 
fumed the quiet poffeflion of it. Seeing me opprefied and languid, 
from the effects of a fever, which had feized me on the road, he 
procured me a bed, and gave me ever/ nourifhment which his 
boufe afforded. 

On the nth, at the village of Buddoo — tencofles; the re- 
sidence of a petty chief, tributary to Jumbo. This day an annual 
fair was held at an adjacent hamlet, which being near our road, 
we mixed with the numerous fpectators of the feftival. The good 
humour and mirth accompanying this meeting exhibited a ftrong 
contraft to the fecne of yefterday, and defcribed, in lively colours, 
the various bounties which flow from peace. Among the diver- 


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fions of the day, I obferved the wheel with boxes fufpended from 
its rim, of common ufe in the fouthern parts of India, for whirling 
round thofe who are difpoied to make fuch aeiial circuits. More 
than once have I taken my feat in one of thofe whirligigs, and 
can aflure you, that the entertainment, though not of a fober kind, 
has its pleafui es ; and what is more than you can fay of many a 
pleafure, it fets you down where it took you up. My fervant did 
not arrive this evening, and from having hitherto wholly relied on 
his fervices, I fuftained a great inconveniency. But a Kafhmirian 
family at Buddo, on the fcore of an acquaintance with my com- 
panion, in a certain degree relieved it, by giving us a friendly re- 
ception, and a (lender fupper. A 

On the 12th at Mancote — eight cofles. A chief depending 
on Jumbo refided at this village, which (lands on an eminence 
partially ikirted by a fmall river. Here my troubles branched out 
anew, and though not deferving a rank in the lid of misfortunes, 
involved me in various difficulties. My Kammirian aflbciate 
having by miftake proceeded beyond our place of rendezvous, there 
was no one to prepare my victuals, or to take care of the horfe. 
Though the Hindoos hold in abomination the performance of any 
menial office for (Grangers, yet the mop-keeper at Mancote, from 
whom I had purchafed the neceffaries of the day, afforded me 
great afliftancc. He gave me houfc-room, a bed, and alfo fome 
of his houfehold utenfils, for holding the horfe's corn, and my 
own provifion. From an aflbciation with thofe who had obviated 



my various wants, and had even rendered the journey a pleafant 
one, I was at once deprived of all help. In the firft place, I 
cleaned and fed my horfe, nor did he deferve lefs at my hands ; for 
lie was a good-tempered, fure-footed, active animal. Had he not 
indeed been thus qualified, he could not have fupported fuch fa- 
tigue, or have clambered over the fteep and and rocky mountains 
that had hitherto flood in his way. After this care, it was necef- 
fary to remedy the flare of my own wants, which became urgent 
and clamorous, for I had not eaten any thing that day. 

Being told that a mendicant Seid* of eminent fancTity refided 
m the upper part of the town, I prefented myfclf to him, told my 
ftory, and earneftly entreated his aid. I had imagined that the 
man who lived on public benevolence, whofe welfare in the world 
was promoted by a common exercjfe of humanity, would have 
chearfully come forward to my fuccour, efpecially as the requeft 
had no tendency to touch his property. But I reckoned without 
my holt. Never did mitred prielr in all the plenitude of his 
power, rolling amidir the pluralities of benefice, regard a meagre 
curate with a deeper contempt of eye, than did this haughty dc- 
fcendant of Mahomet receive my Application. Simply fetting 
forth the lofs of my fervant, and the inability to fupply his place, 
I requefled that he would direct his people to prepare for me a 
meal, the materials of which were all in readinefs. This language 

• The d.fccndants of Mahomet arc fo denominated. 


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had no erFeft on the Seid, who confiding, I fuppofe, wholly in the 
efficacy of faith, had exploded from his creed the doctrine of good 
works : or, considering perhaps the trade of begging to be a mono- 
poly of^ his order, he wifhed to expel and difcourage all interlopers. 
After warmly expatiating on the difficulties that furrounded me, 
throwing in alfo fome ftrichires on his conduct, he grumbled an 
aiTent, but with an exprefs provifo that I fhould produce fire-wood. 
I could as eafily have brought him a bulfe of diamonds as a flick, 
for it was then dark, and indeed hunger and fatigut had made me 
incapable of exertion. Turning from him with indignation, I 
loudly reprobated his violation of what even the rudeft Mahome- 
tans hold facred, the rights of hofpitality ; a ready performance of 
which, he- ought to know, was earneftly enjoined, and that the 
Divine vengeance was peculiarly denounced againft all who tranf- 
grefs its law. This exclamation, delivered with heat, rouzed the 
attention of his adherents, one of whom defiling me to be paci- 
fied, propofed to adjuft the embarrafTment. He carried me to the 
houfe of a fmging girl, who, on learning the ftory of my want?, 
tucked up her garment with a fmiling alacrity, and commenced 
the bufinefs of relieving them without delay. It would have made 
your heart glad to have feen this honcfl: girl baking my bread and 
boiling my peas, me did it with fo good a will ; frequently ob- 
ferving, that I had conferred an honour upon her, and that the pre- 
fent fervicc, was but a imall return for the many favours fhe had 
received from thofe of my clafs. Will not you jud^e the declara- 


tion of her rcfufing all donation, an Eaftern hyperbole ? Yet I 
affirm to you that it is a genuine ftory, and were Mancote at no 
further diftance from Lucknow, than Shieck Seray,* you might 
procure, from this honeft girl, a tcftimony of its truth. * 

On the 13th I arrived at Manfir — eight cofles. The country 
now became more open, and the vallies better cultivated than any 
I have feen to the weftward of BhTouly. The journey this day 
was pleafant, and what in my proceeding was extraordinary, I did 
not deviate from the road, though alone. In paflirg near an en- 
campment of beggars, (a merry troop they were) they defired me 
to alight and take fome refreftiment : the invitation was thankfully 
accepted, and I partook of a coarfe, but cordial meal, which was 
ferved up with frequent profeflions of welcome. Manfir is com- 
pofed of a few houfes, (landing on the margin of a beautiful flieet 
of water, which is abundantly fapplied with filh i but being held 
a facred or royal property, they live unmolefted. The lands of 
Manfir were appropriated, by a former chief of Jumbo, to the 
maintenance of certain Byraghees,* who in this delicious fpot 
feem to enjoy every pleafurc which men in India can tafte. But 
here I am checked and called upon to crave your pardon, for thefe 
folitary feclaries have precluded women from their fociety j and to 
fay that any portion of life, however replete with other gratifica- 

* This place is about fix miles diftant from Lucknow. 
f A religious tribe of Hindoos who profefc celibacy. 


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tions, can yield a genuine pleafure without women, is to fuppofc 
that our day could be chearful without the light of the fun. At 
this village the wife of a Mahometan oilman conducted my culi- 
nary bufinefs, but in a manner far different from that of my late 
mufical friend : (he took moft unwarrantable emoluments out of 
an ill-drcfled fupper ; and her cat, which feemed to have a conge- 
nial temper, made an attack on my baggage at night, and carried 
off the little ftock of provifions which I had prepared for the next 
day's breakfaft. 

Lest my arrival at Jumbo mould excite enquiry, which from 
the difpofition of the chief might not be favourable, I denominated 
myfelf an officer in the Jumbo fervice, travelling from the army, 
which was then in the field, to the city. The road this day lead- 
ing in a fouth-weft * direction, was the moft dreary one I had ever 
feen, and became more fo from the want of a companion. On 
approaching fo large a town as Jumbo, I expected to have feen a 
moderately populous country ; but the afpecT: was altogether the 
reverfe. Many miles of the road lay through a defile of fand, the 
fides of which confift of lofty rocks, and nearly perpendicular. 
The predicament in which I then flood gave a gloomy caft to my 
thoughts, which naturally adverted to that long eftablifhed pofi- 
tion, of u man being a fociable animal j" the truth of which few 

• The fouthern inclination of this day, was caufed, I apprehend, from the forma- 
tion of fome branch of the mountains. 

Vol. L H h arc 


arc more convinced of than myfelf. I did not dwell on the varfotw 
ufes inherent in the principles of fociety, nor on the grander be- 
nefits fo extenfively diftufed by gtneral compaft ; but was contented 
with viewing the leffcr conveniencics which it imparts, with reflect- 
ing on the cafual, but grateful enjoyments which men receive from 
the moil fluctuating intercourfc. What harmony, what good hu- 
mour, are often feen circulating in a fweetmcat (hop, the coffee 
houfe of India ! where all fubjccls, except that of the ladies, are 
treated with freedom : not fo eloquently perhaps, nor with fueh 
refinement of language, as among the politicians of an European 
capital, yet with equal fervour and ftrength of voice. The fa- 
vourite topic is war j there you may hear of exploits performed by 
a lingle arm, at the recital of which even Secunder * would have 
grown pale, and Ruftum -j: himfelf trembled. The pleafure o£ 
communication, by which they become the heroes of their own 
tale, is a keen fpur to the various clafs of adventurers, and perhaps 
fewer men would encounter fcrvices of hazard, were not a pleafure 
expected from their recital. 

On the fide of the road, to my great joy, I at length difco- 
tered a family fitting on a narrow green fpot, where availing them- 
fclves of the Angular fituation, they were grazing their cattle. I 
fat myfelf down without ceremony, and was prefented with what I 

• The Afiatic name of Alexander the Great. 

t A hero celebrated in the ancient legends of Perfia. 


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hare often recolle&ed with plcafure, for the heat of the day had 
made roe very thirfty), a eup of butter-milk. The father told me 
that the oppreflions of his landlord had forced him to quit his 
houfe, and he was then in quell of fome fecurer refidence. On 
your fide of India, acts are doubtlefs committed that tend to fully 
the honour and imprefs an odium on the character of our nation ; 
but they are, believe me, faint fpecks when compared with the deeds 
of mjuftke and rapacity praclifed in other Afiatic countries. One 
of the family fuffered much pain from a lacerated finger, and as all 
perfons of my colour are in India denominated furgeons, wizards, 
and artillery-men, I was called upon to adminifter help, which I 
did gratis to their great fatisfaaion. 

Towards the evening, I arrived at the lower town of Jumbo, 
where feeing a retired houfe at which I intended to have fought 
ad mi (fi on, I difcovered a perfon who, about a month before, tra- 
velled for fome days in the fame party with me j but being em- 
ployed on fome fervice of difpatch, he had left it. This man being 
now the fervant of a Kaflimirian at Jumbo, for whom I had 
brought a letter of introduction, and whofe name I ufed to men- 
tion in the courfe of the journey, deftroyed my fcheme of privacy. 
He ran off as foon as he had diftin&ly fcen me, and fpeedily re- 
turned with his mailer, who would not reft fatisfied until he had 
lodged me in his houfe, though we were obliged to proceed thither 
in the midft of a heavy rain : it would be a tedious and flat ftory, 
to detail the multiplied modes of the refpeft of this Kaflimirian for 

H h 2 my 


my pcifon, which he had never before feen } or to enumerate hit 
painful, yet inceflant attentions. Whatever partiality I might en- 
tertain for my own merits, I was neceflarily impelled to lee that 
his affiduity proceeded from a belief of the opultnce, and the will* 
of tranfatting the commercial bufinefs of his gucir. After he had 
gone through the long routine of my extraordinary qualities and 
accomplifliments, of whofe excellency he had been advifed by his 
correfpondent at Lucknow, he congratulated ray lingular good for- 
tune in having met him fo early on my ar rival - t for except himfelf, 
I fliould not have found an honeft man in Jumbo. Such, my 
friend, is the effervefcence of Oriental fpeech, which if expofed to 
the colder air of the north, would fubfide into that ftrain of languagp 
fpoken every day in Change Ally and CheapfidV. It was beft not 
to undeceive my Kaflimirian, as the chaia&er of a merchant is more 
refpedted here than any other, and under which the leaft: fufpicion 
is entertained of a ftranger. On prefenting my bill to the banker 
at Jumbo, I found, from its having been twice drenched in water, 
that the folds adhered together as firmly as if they had been patted* 
The banker,* with much good nature, foaking the paper in water, 
and opening the folds with care, was enabled to read, though with, 
difficulty, the contents. Had he been difpofed to protract the pay- 
ment, there was fufficient caufe, but holding out no demur, he at 
once faid the bill was a good one, kindly obferving alfo, that as 

• His name i» Juala Naut, the nephew of Kaflimiry Mull, at Bcnare*. 


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ray journey had bevn long and fatiguing, I mould have brought 
an ord.r for a larger fum. 

Jumbo is fituated on the fide of a hill, and cent .ins two dif- 
tinet divifions, which are termed the upper and the lower towns. 
The bottom of the hill is warned by the river Rawee,* about forty 
or fifty yards broad, and fordablc at moil fcafons of the year. 
Many water- milts ftand on it* banks for grinding corn, which are 
eonftructed in a neater manner than any 1 have feen in India, and 
were introduced by the Kaihmirians, who have greatly improved as 
well as enriched this town. The (hort (lay at Jumbo prevented me 
from procuring much fatisfactory information of its htftory, or the 
caufcs which have produced its important commerce, riches, and 
luxury : for Jumbo, even in its decayed ftate, is a mart of the firft 
note in this quarter of the country. Perhaps the collection of 
fuch materials would not have compenfated the labour of perufal, 
or afforded you that mftruction which I ever wifli to be the effect 
of my communications : — but fuch as I have procured, (hall be 
genuinely laid before you. 

Previously to Nadir Shah's invafion of India, the common 
road from Dehli to Kafhmire, lay through Sirhend, Lahore, and 
Heerpour, the pafs of which is fully defcribed by Mr. Bernier, un- 
der the name of Bember. Since the inroad of the Perfians, Af- 
ghans, and the Mahrattas, but efpecially fince the period of the 

• It falls into the Chinnaun. 



Sicquc conquefo, that track has been rendered unfafc to Merchant*-, 
and is now difufed. This obftruclion diverted the Kammirian trade 
into the channel of Jumbo, which being (hot up from the Punjab 
by a ftrong chain of mountains, difficult of accefs to cavalry, it 
has been preferred to the Lahore road, though the journey is te- 
dious, and the expenfes of merchandize increafed 

Rcnzeip Dete, the father of the prefertt chief of Jumbo, wH* 
defervedly acquired the charaaer of a juft and wife ruler, largely- 
contributed to the wealth and importance of Jumbo. Perceiving 
the benefits which would ariie from the refidence of Mahometan 
merchants, he held out to them many encouragements, and ob- 
ferved towards them a difinterefted and an honourable conduct. Ne- 
gative virtues only are expeaed from an Afiatk defpot, and under 
luch a fanftion his fubjeas might deem themfelves fortunate } but 
the chief of Jumbo went farther than the forbearance of injurki 
lie avowedly jh otcctal and indulged his people, particularly the 
Mahometans, to whom he allotted a certain quarter of the town, 
which was thence denominated Moghulpour ; and that no referve 
might appear in his treatment of them, a mofquc was ereaed in 
the new colony ; a liberality of difpofition the more confpicuour, 
and confering the greater honour on his memory, as it is the only 
inftance of the like toleration in this part of India, and as the 
Kafhmirians who chiefly compofed his Mahometan fubjeas, have 
been, fincc their converfion, r porous perfecutors of the Hindoos. 
He was fo defirous alfo of acquiring their confidence and cflcem, 

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that when he has been riding through their quarter during the 
time of prayer, he never failed to flop his horfe until the prieft 
had concluded his ritual exclamations. The Hindoos once com- 
plained to this chief, that the public wells of the town were defiled 
by the veffels of the Mahometans, and defired that they might be 
refrrifted to the water of the river ; but he abruptly difmified the 
complaint, faying, that water was a pure element, defigncd for 
the general ufeof mankind, and could not be polluted by the touch 
©f any clafs of people. An adminiftration fo munificent and ju- 
dicious, at the fame time that it enforced the refpeft of his own 
fiibjeas, made Jumbo a place of extenfive commercial refort, 
where all defcriptions of men experienced,, in their perfons and 
property, a full fecurity. 

The articles of merchandize conftituting the trade of Jumbo, 
and Kafhmire, sre tranfportcd oy men, ufually Kaflimirians, 
whofe burthens are heavy, two of them making the load of a ftrong 
mule, and the hire is 6xed at the rate of four rupees for each car- 
rier. The {hauls, when exported from Kathmirc, are packed in- 
an oblong bale, containing a certain weight or quantity, which in- 
the language of the country is termed a biddery, the outward co- 
vering of which is a buffalo or ox's hide, flrongly fewed with lea- 
ther thongs. As thefe packages are fuppofed to amount, with lit- 
tle variation, to a value Ipng fincc afcertained, they are feldow 
opened until conveyed to the deftined market. A Kaftimirian 
porter carries a toad as a foldicr docs his knap-fack, and when did 


24 t FORSTER'S travels* 

pofed to reft, he places under it a ftick in the form of a crutch 
which fupports the load and affifts him alfo in walking. Two 
caufes are afligned for employing men only in this fervice : an 
agreement, it is faid ariling from a mutual jealoufy, has been made 
between the chiefs bordering on either fide of the river Chinnaun,* 
that no fixed bridge fhall be conftrufled, or any boat ftationed on 
that dream. The other caufe afcribed, which feems to be more 
forcible, is the ftupendous height and fteepnefs of the intervening 
mountains, which renders the paflages dangerous, if not wholly im- 
practicable, to either a horfe or mule. 

It appears that Jumbo continued to increafe its power and 
commerce until the year 1770, the period of Runzeid Deve's death, 
when one of his fons, the prefent chief, contrary to the intention 
and exprefs will of his father, feized on the government, put to 
death one of his brothers, the intended fucceflbr, and imprifoned 
another ; who having made his efcape fought the protection of the 
Sicques. Pleafed in having obtained fo favourable a pretext for 
entering Jumbo, which they attempted in vain during the admini- * 
ftration of Runzeid Deve, the Sicques promifed to efpoufe the 
fugitive's caufe with vigour. A fmall fum had been annually ex- 
acted by them from Jumbo, but in a much lefs proportion than 
what was levied in the adjacent territories, The Sicques, indeed, 
aware of the refpectablc ftate of the Jumbo force, and the ability 

? The fourth Punjab rivtr from the eaftwardj 


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of the chief, were contented with the name of tribute. The moft 
valuable divifion of the Jumbo difhi&s, lay in the plain country, 
forming part of the northern Punjab j which, under pretence of 
affording affittanc/; to the peifon who lately fought their protec- 
tion, a body of Sicques have laid wafte. They are now profe- 
cuting a vigorous war againft the prefent chief, who through the 
defection of many of his people, driven by oppieflions to the 
party of his brother, became unable to make any effectual (land ; 
and that his ill fortune might be complete, he called into his aid, 
a party of Sicque mercenaries, commanded by Mhah Sing, a pow- 
erful officer in that quarter, who has firmly eftabliflied his au- 
thority at Jumbo, and has erected a fort at the fouth entrance 
of the principal pafs leading into the Punjab. For defraying the 
expence incurred by the Sicque troops, the Jumbo chief has made 
1 igorous demands on the native inhabitants of the city, and is now 
throwing an eye on the foreign merchants ; who, dreading his 
difpofition and neceffities, have taken a general alarm. It was 
with much pleafure I faw the perfon on whom my bill was drawn, 
a man of a fair and honourable character, enjoying, amidft thefe 
diforders, a moderate fecurity. He feemed to have procured the 
favour of Mhah Sing, who, with other officers of the party, fup- 
ported him againft the defigns of the Rajah. The perfon entrufted 
with the government of the town of Jumbo, during the abfence of 
the chief then in the field, was fo exact a counterpart of his matter 
Vol. L I i in 


in the fyftem of opprcfiion, that I was advifed to a fpecdy depar- 
ture, left I fliould fall under an inflection. Though much fa- 
tigued by an bar raffing jonrney, and the fale of my horfe, with 
other neceflary concerns, was to be adjufted, &ch was the afecn- 
dency of my fears, that on the 16th of the month, I was ready to 

In laying before you thefe fcattcred pieces of intelligence, I 
muft not forget to notice, that the courtezans and female dancers 
of the Punjab and KaOimire, or rather a mixed breed of both thefe 
countries, are beautiful women, and are held in great eftimation 
through all the northern parts of India : the merchants eftablifhed 
at Jumbo, often become fo fondly attached to a dancing girl, that, 
neglecting their occupation, they have been known to diflipate, at 
her will, the whole of their property $ and I have feen fome of them 
reduced to a fubiiitence on charity 5 for thefe girls, in the manner 
of their profeffion, are profufe and rapacious. 

My Kafhmirian hoft, who continued to opprefs me with kind- 
nefs, had a brother living in the fame houfe, who was fo much 
afflicted with the rheumatifm, that he could not ftir out of his 
room. PolVclTing much uieful information, with a pleafant focia- 
ble temper, I was glad to be admitted to his converfation, which 
equally amufed me, and contributed to a knowledge of this quarter 
of India. He gave me alfo fome directions for my conduct in 
Kaflimiie, which were delivered with an air of candour, and fo 


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apparently* void of dcfign, that I mould haw been ridiculoufly 
iccptical in not giving them credit. The day before I left Jumbo, 
he called me into his room, and in very affectionate language, faid, 
" My friend, you are now about vifiting a country, whofe inha- 


" bitants arc of a character different from any you have hitherto 
" feen, and it behoves you to be wary and diligent, for they arc 
" a fubtle and keen people. You muft particularly be on your 
u guard againft my brother, who is now in that country, and 
** will, probably endeavour to borrow fome of your money. Stea- 
" dily withftand his folicitations, nor lend him a rupee •, for if you 
11 do, the money is loft. Make your diiburfements only on the 
" delivery of the goods, and, however urgent he is, do not make 
" any advance." He difplayed, I thought, a Angular trait of ho- 
nefty in giving an advice wholly diverted of a tendency to promote 
the interefts of his family, at the expence of fair dealing. 

Though the diftricts of Buddoo and Ghinanah * do not at 
this day form immediate appendages of Jumbo, they are fo inti- 
mately dependent on its policy, that to avoid prolixity, I will 
throw their limits into one defcription. This united territory is 
bounded on the north by the river Chinaun, which divides it 
from Kilhtcwer ; on the eaft by independent Hindoo diftricts ; 
on the fouth by Biflbuly ; and on the weft by the Punjab. It 
would be hazarding too hafty an aflfertion to offer any fpecific 

• This diftria lies to the well ward of Jumbo. 

I i 2 calculation 


calculation of tht Jumbo revenue, as the larger moiety is pro- 
duced by import and export duties, which are now in a fluctu- 
ating ftate, and have been diminifhing fince the acceffion of the 
prefent chief i but the current information of the country, ftates 
the ordinary receipt at 6ve lacks of rupees, exclufive of the pro- 
duce of Buddoo and Chinanah. 

I am, 

Dear Sir, 

Your's, &c: 


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The frequent introduction of the Sicques 
to your notice, will have naturally excited a defire to examine the 
hiftory of this new and extraordinary people, who within a period 
of twenty years, have conquered a tra£t of country, extending in 
certain directions from the Ganges to the Indus. My knowledge 
of the fubject does not permit me to deduce, on fubftantial au- 
thority, their hiftory from the period in which Nanock their firft 
inftitutor and law-giver lived, or mark with an order of dates the 
progrefs which this people have made, and the varying gradations 
of their power, until their attainment of their prefent ftate of na- 
tional importance. You who are apprized of the futility of the 
documents which compofe the general texture of Eaftern record,* 


• Neither the genius of the people nor the form of their government is favourable 
to the growth of Hiftory, which is rarely feen to flourifli on defpotic ground. The 
actions of Afiatic princes are ufually recorded by their own fcribes ; and we know that 
a large portion of the annals of India was manufactured under imperial i:ifpe£tion. 
It is, therefore, fcarccly within the verge of probability, that a writer, attracted by fe 
powerful an influence, would dared to have thrown the piercing light of Hiftory on 
' the 


who have witncfild the irrefiftible tendency of an Afiatic mind to 
fiction, and the produce of its du&ile fancy, will grant me an in- 
dulgent fcope, and will, I truft, believe, that though the body of 
the hirtory be not complete, fuch parts only will be noticed, as are 
cither founded on received tradition, or on thofe legends which 
have the leafr exceptionable claims to credit. 

Under fheirer of this preliminary, 1 will proceed to inform 
you that Nanock,* the founder of the Sicquc nation, was born in 
the year of the Chriitian era, 1469, during the reign of Sultan 
Belou),f at the village of Tulwundy,* about fixty miles to the 
weilward of Lahore. Nanock appears to have polleHed qualities 
happily adapted to effect the inftitution o.f a new fyftem of religion. 
He was inflexibly juft; he enjoyed from nature a commanding 

the reijning monarch, or even to have examined with freedom the actions of his an- 
ccflors, who have, for more than two hundred years, maintained an unbroken fnc- 
ceiTion of the Empire of Hindoftan. Oriental fpcech, pregnant with figure, and ca,- 
pible of exprciTing the wildeft nights of fancy, diOains the limits of Hiftory. It is 
•better fitted to modulate poetic (train*, ami dclcribe the wide region of romance ; 
where ic can roam without rcftraint, and bappijy without the powv of conia.uting 
extennve injuries. 

* He was of th« ChitUrj or fecond caft of Hindoos, and according to a fecrct ba- 
lief of the Sicqucs, a fpecies of fecondary incarnation of the Supreme Deity. 

t A Patan king of Dehli, who reigned previous to Baber's , : ft of Hindoftan. 

\ This village is now known by the name of Rhaypour. The terms given by the 

Sicqucs to their places of worfhip, are Sungbut, Durmfa!!ah % and Dafrab, words lig- 

nifying, in the Hinduee, an aflembly of the people, a chavitable or pious foundation, 

and a houfe. This laft appellation feems to be applied in an eminent fenfe, as «* the 

** houfo." The Sicques, in commemoration of the place of N'anock's birth, have 

ere&cd an ediik« at Tulwondy, where a grand feftival is annually celebrated. 

» ' • . - ' . • • < ' " i ' • ! , 


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elocution, and was endowed with a calm paflivc fortitude, which 
frccel'sfully fupported him through the long courfe of a dangerous 
eecupat>on. The tenets of Nanock forbid the worfliip of images, 
and ordain that the places of public prayer (hall be of plain con- 
rtrucrion, and devoid of every exhibition of figure. A book, en- 
titled the Grun/h, which contains the civil and religious inftitutcs 
of Nanock, is the only typical object which the Sicques have ad- 
mitted into their places of worlhip. Inftead of the intermediation 
of fubordinatc deities, they are directed to addrefs their prayer to 
•ne God, who, without the aid of any delegate, is to be confidered 
the unaflbciated ruler of the univerfe* Though many eflential 
differences exift between the religious code of the Hindoos and that 
of the Sicque?, a large fpace of their ground-work exhibits ftrong 
features of fimilarity. The article indeed of the admiffion of pro- 
jfclytes amongft the Sicques, has caufed an eflential deviation from 
the Hindoo fyflem, and apparently levelled thofe barriers which 
were conrtrncled by Brimha, for the arrangement of the different 
tanks and profeflions of his people. Yet this indifcrimmate ad- 
million, bf the qualifications which have been adopted, do not 
widtly infringe on the cuftoms and prgudiccs of thofe Hindoos 

• When it is noticed that the worthip of the Hindoo, is loaded wich a mafc of 
puerile ceremony, ami oftentimes conduded with a ridiculous grimace, it will not 
feera furprizins that a creed, founded on principles calculated to piontote th« eft blitn- 
mt:it of a limplc uniform religion, awl promulgated by. a man of djflinguifhed tribe and 
exemplary manners, fflould draw to it prof«lyu»cvco- iirtae btgotted region* of India. 



who have embraced the faith of the Sicques. They ftill preferve 
ihe diftinttions which originally marked their feels, and perform 
many of the ancient ceremonies of their nation. They form ma- 
trimonial connections only in their own tribes, and adhere impli- 
citly to the rules prefcribed by the Hindoo law, in the choice and 
preparation of their food. The only aliment ufed in common, by 
the Sicques at this day, is the purfaud* or facred bread, from 
the participation of which no tribe or clafs of their people is 

Few events of hiftorical importance are related of Nanock, 
the founder of this feet, who poffeffing neither territory nor 
wealth, nor aided by the force of arms, preached his doctrine in 
peace, and manifefted, in the countries which he vifited, an un- 
affected fimplicity of manners. He journeyed through moft of the 
kingdoms in India, from whence, according to the tradition of 
the Sicques, he went into Perfia and Arabia. In his travels, which 
with Ihort intervals continued for the fpace of fifteen years, ho 
was attended by a Mahometan mufician, named Murdana, who 
became his convert, and ever remained faithfully attached to his 
perfon. It is faid that in one of the expeditions, of Baber f into 

• The purfaud is (aid to be a compofition of flour, butter, and certain fpices ; this 
bread after being confecrated by the Bramins, is alfo ufed by fame fc<£ts of Hindoos in 
the ceremony of adminiftering an oarh, particularly in that quarter of the Or ilia pro- 
vince, contiguous to the temple of Juggud Nautt. 

f Baber defeated the Pattn King of Hindoftan, in A. D. 1526. 


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India, Nanock having been apprehended by fome of the foldiers, 
was brought before that prince, who informed of the fan&ity of 
his character, treated him with refpedr. and indulgence. As no* 
records of the Moghul Empire bear a teftimony of the exiftence of 
this fed during the period in which Nanock lived, it cannot be 
foppofed that his converts were numerous or powerful. Nanock, 
according to the Sicque records, died in the month of Auguft, 
A. D. 1539, aged feventy years, at Dayrah, a village on the banks of 
the Rawee, about forty miles to the northward of Lahore, where 
a vaft concourfe of people annually alTemble, to perform certain 
ceremonies in commemoration of the day of his deceafe. Nanock, 
though he had two fons, devolved the charge of the miflion to his 
favourite difciple Anghut,* a Hindoo of the Chittery tribe, to 
whom he alfo entrufted the publication f of the laws and preceptt 
of his doctrine. Anghut, who feems to have palled his time in 
retirement, died about the year 1542, at the town of Khadour,^ 
the place of his nativity. He was fucceeded by Ammerdafs, a 
native of the Lahore diftrict, who propagated the new docVme 
without moleftation, and died in the year 1574, at the village of 


• Nanock changed the original name of his fucceflbr, which was Lina. 
t The religious and hiftorical writings of the Sicques, are written in a character 
Called the Goirtt Mheoite t or the language of the Getrets, or priefls. This letter, 

Which is kid to have been invented by Nanock, differs from the various chara&crs in 


tjfc among the Hindoos. 

% A village in the Punjab, about forty miles to the eaftward of Lahore. 

Vol. I. 




Govinduat,* Ramdafs, f who bad efpoufed the daughter of the 
laft preceptor of the Sicques, was then chofen the reprefentative 
•f their feci. This ptieft lived in the reign of Acbar, and, ac- 
cording to the tradition of the Skqucs, experienced lome marks of 
thai eaiperor's favour. Retiring in the latter part of his life to 
a froaU diltriai in the vicinity of Lahore, which Acbar had 
granted to him, he founded the town of Raoidanpour. He re- 
paired aMb and ornamented a refervoir of water, which had in an- 
cient times been dedicated at that place by the Hindoos to their 
God Ram, and to which he now gave the name of Amrut <£r>.§ 
Ramdafs made a compilation of the hiftory and precepts of hrs 
predeceffors, and annexing his own commentaries, ordained that 
his difciples mould form the principles of their faith on the doc- 
trine fct forth in the joint coUeaion. Ramdafs died at the town 
he had founded about the year 1581, and was facceeded by hi* 
fon Arjun, who having incurred the difpleafure of a Hindoo |{ fa- 
voured by Jehanguir, was committed by that prince to the perfe- 
ction of his enemy ; and his death, which happened in the year 
1606, at Lahore, was caufed it is laid by the rigour of confine- 


* Situate on the Byas, the fecond Punjab river from the ea ft ward- 
f This Gooroo was born in the city of Lahore. 
\ At the diftancc of twenty four miles from Lahore. 

§ Amruty according to the mythology of the Hindoos, is a water faid to be (tow 
immortality on thofe who drink it , and Sir, in certain diaktfs of tnc Hiaduce, igni- 
tes a piece of water. < 

I Named Chaundoo. 


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meat. The fucecffion devolved on Hurrgovind, hi* oftly fon, 
who a&uated by revenge for the cruelties exerciied on his father, 
and ftrongly fupported by the enthufiaitic valour of his adherents* 
he dragged die Hindoo from his houfe, though within the'walls 
of Lahore, and put him to death. Fearing the effects of the 
emperor's difykaiurc, Hurrgovind fled to Hurtarpour, a village 
founded by his father, where he collected an armed body for the 
defence of his perfon, and according to the records of the nation, 
defeated a force that Jehanguir had fent to puni(h his rebellion. 
But the vein of incongruous ftory which runs through the at- 
chievements of this militant pried, precludes the derivation of 
any ertenfive hiftorical ufe. The only paflage deferving a ferious 
notice, wpwfonts, that an officer of Jehanguir, named Mahobut 
JChan, effected the Sicque's (ubmiffion to the emperor, who or- 
dered him to be im priibntd in the fort of Gualior : but that after 
a (hart confinement, he was, at the interceflion of Mahobut Khan, 
set at liberty. It is not feen that Hurrgovind difturbed the peace 
of the Moghul government at a future period, but pa fling his 
days in a reclufe manner, he died about the year 1644, at Khyrut- 
pour, a village in the Punjab. The Sicques conferred the office of 
priefthood on Harray, the grandfon of Hurrgovind, though four 
of their late preceptor's fons were alive. No other mention is 
made of Harray, than that he died in the year 1661 at Khyrut- 
pour. At his death, a violent contcft arofe for the fucceffion, 
which was claimed by the refpecYxvc adherents of his two fons, 

K k 2 Ramroy, 


Ramroy and Hurkiflien, then in infancy ; but not being enabled 
to adjuft their claims at home, they appealed to the courts of law 
at Dehli, where the opponents appeared, and fet forth their feveral 
pretenfions. The caufc it is faid terminated in a permiflion being 
granted to the Sicques to nominate their own prieft ; when, ad- 
jutting the conteft, they elected Hurkiflien, who died at Dchli ia 
1664, a fhort time after his inveftiture. 

Hurki&hen was fucceeded by Taigh Bhahauder, his uncle, 
who appears to have been perfecuted with inveterate animofity by 
the adherents of Ramroy, who, fupported by fomc pcrforw of in- 
fluence at the court of Aurungzebe, an order was obtained for 
the imprifoament of the new prieft. Taigh Bhahauder, after re* 
maimng in confinement at Dehli for the fpacc of two years, was 
releafed at the intreaty of Jay Sing, the powerful chief of Jayna- 
ghur, who was at that time proceeding to Bengal on the fervice of 
government. The Sicque accompanied his patron to Bengal, 
whence he returned to the city of Patna, which became bis ufual 
place of abode. The records of the Sicques fay that Ramroy ft ill 
maintained a claim to the priefthood, and that after a long fcries 
of virulent perfecution, he accomplished the deftruclion of Taigh 
Bhahauder, who was conveyed to Dehli by an order of Court, and 
in the year 1675, publickly put to death. The formal execution 
of a perfon, againft whom, the Sicques fay, no criminal charge 
was exhibited, is fo repugnant to the character and the actions of 
Aurungzebe, that we are involuntarily led to charge the Sicques 


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•fa wilful mifreprefentation of fafts, injurious to the memory of 
the prince, and extravagantly partial to the caufe of their prieft. 
No document for the elucidation of this paflage appearing in any 
of the memoirs of Hindoilan that have reached my knowledge, I 
am prevented from difcovering the quality of the crime which fub- 
jccted Taigh Bhahauder to capital punifhmenr. 

Govind Sing, then a youth, and the only fon of Taigh 
Bhahauder, was called to the fucceffion by the largeft portion of 
the Sicque's difciples : but the intelligence of his father's death, 
and dread of a like fate, had induced him to fly from Patna, 
whence he retired after a feries of various adventures into the ter- 
ritory of Siringnaghur. Though Govind Sing could not then 
have reached his fifteenth year, he evinced many marks of a 
haughty and turbulent fpirit, which was confpicuoufly fhewn in 
his conduct to the Siringnaghur chief. On pretence of an infult 
being offered, he collected his party, which amounted it is fat*" to 
four or five thoufand men, and defeated a body of the Siringna- 
ghur troops j but being worfted in fome future action, or, ac- 
cording to the authority of the Sicque, obliged by an order of the 
emperor to leave the country of Siringnaghur, he proceeded with 
his adherents to the Punjab, where he was hofpitably * received 
fey a marauding Hindoo chief of that quarter. Endowed with a.n 

•" The dependencies of Mackaval, through which the river Sutledge runs, were 
given by this Hindoo to Govind Sing, where he founded certain villages. 



aaivc and daring temper, the Skque aftifted his new aflbciate m S 
vatious expeditions againft the bordering landholders, and often < 
in oppofing the forces of government. The predatory conduct of 
Govind Sing rendering him obnoxious to the governor of Sirhend, 
he was attacked and driven from his place of re faience. Being 
afterwards difcovered amongft the hills in the northern parts of 
the Siihcnd diftri&s, he was fo vigoroufly prefled by the imperial 
troops, that abandoning his family and eflfe&s, he was compelled 
to fave himfelf by fpeedy flight. Vizier Khan, the governor of 
Sirhend, fuliied the reputation he had acquired in this fervice, by 
putting to death, in cold blood, the two younger Ions of Govind 
Sing. A fevere vengeance was taken for this ad at a future pe- 
riod by the Sicques, who giving a loofe to favage and indii'enmi- 
nate cruelty, maflacred the Mahometans, of every age and ftx, 
that fell into their hands. After his late difafter, Govind Sing- 
found a fecure retreat in the Lacky Jungles,* which its natural 
defence, a fcarcity of water, and the valour of its inhabitants,^ 
had rendered at that day impregnable. But when the refentment 
of government abated, he returned without molcftation to his 
former refidcnce in the Punjab. The Sicques fay, he even re- 
ceived marks of favour from Bhahautler Shah, who being apprifed 
of his military abilities, gave him a charge in the army which 

• A woody country, fituate in the northern part of the Punjab, and famous for a 
breed of excellent horfes, called the Jungle Tazec. 
f Thejattt. 


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marched into the Decan to oppofe the rebellion of Rambuchfh.* 
Cuvind Sing was afiaifinated during this expedition by a Patan 
ibldier, and he died of his wounds in 1708, at the town of Nan- 
dere,-f- without leaving any nialeiffue; and a tradition delivered 
to the Sicques, limiting their priefls to the number of fen, induced 
them to appoint no fuceeflbr to Govind Sing. A Sicque difciple, 
named Bunda, who had attended Govind Sing to the Decan, came, 
after the death of his chief, into the Punjab; where, claiming a 
merit from ha late connection, he railed a fmall force, and in va- 
rious rieful tory enter/prizes, eftablifhcd the character of a brave but 
cruel faldier. His fuccefies at length drew to his frandard the 
whole body of the Sicque nation, which had now widely deviated 
from the precepts of their founder. A confidence m their ftrength, 
rendered prefumptuous by the abfence of the emperor, had made 
them rapacious and daring, and the late perfocutions, cruel and 
enthufiaftic. Bunda, after difperfing the parties of the lefler Ma- 
hometan chiefs, attacked the forces of Vizier Khan, the governor 
•f Sirhertd, who fell in an action that was fought with an obfti- 
nate valour, but ertfed in the total defeat of the imperial troops. 
The Sicques cxprefled an ex traca dinar v joy at this vidory, as it 
enabled them to fatiate their revenge for the death of the fons of 
Govind Sing. The wife of Vi^er Khun, with his childien, and a 

• A brother of Bhahauder Shah. 

t Nandcre is fituatc near the banks of the Godave/y, aboui 100 miles to the 
north»eait of Hyderabad, , 



vaft multitude of the inhabitants of Sirhend were dcftroyed with 
every fpecies of wild fury. The mofques were overthrown or pol- 
luted, and the dead, torn out of their graves, were cxpofcd to the 
hearts of prey. A party of Sicques had at the fame time penetrated 
the greater Duab, and feized on the town and certain diftri%> of 
Saharanpour,* where they flaughtered the inhabitants, or forcibly 
made them converts to the new faith. Bunda, who had rapidy 
acquired the pofleflion of an extenfive territory, was now defertcd 
by his good fortune. He had c roiled the river Sutledge with an 
intention of carrying his conquefts to the weftward, but being 
encountered by Shems Khan, an imperial officer who commanded 
in that quarter, he was repulfed with a great lofs. The Sicque's 
troops employed in the Duab expedition, had even approached 
the vicinity of Dehli, but they were defeated by the forces of the 
empire, and driven back to the diftricls which (till remained fub- 
ject to Bunda. 

Such was the fit nation of the Sicques when Bhahauder Shah 
finiftied the Decan campaign, and returned in the year 1 710 to 
Hindoftan. Alarmed at the progrefs, and irritated at the cruelties 
they had exercifed, he marched towards their ftations with a de- 
termination to crufti the fe£t, and revenge the injuries that had 
been inflicted on the Mahometan religion. Sultan Rouli Khan, 
*ne of his principal officers, advanced with a divifion of the army, 

■\ For its {tfuation, fee RenneU'i map. 
i and 

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and encountering the Sicques on the plains of Sirhend, put them 
to flight after a bloody conflict ; and a party of the fugitives who 
had taken refuge with Bunda, in a ftrong poft, were made pri- 
foners, though not before their chief had efcaped. The Sicques 
who furvived this difafter, though compelled to difperfe, and their 
chief to wander about the country in difguife, were not conquered 
in the reign of Bhahauder Shah. The death * of this prince im- 
peded the fuccefs of an active purfuit which had been made after 
the vanquiflied fectarics, on whofe lives a price was fet in every part 
of the empire. Conformably to the order of the laft pricft, the 
difciples of Nanock had permitted the growth of the hair of the 
head and beard. An edict was therefore iflued, compelling the 
Hindoos of every tribe to cut off their hair. 

Jehandar SHAH.f who fucceeded to the empire, made a 
feeble effort to accomplifh the extirpation of the Sicques, but his 
fhort reign being involved in an alternate feries of debauchery, and 
tumultuous defence of his country againft the invafion of Furruck 
Sir, this people were encouraged to emerge from their conceal- 
ment, and again take up the fword. In the reign of Furruck Sir,! 
the Sicques, who had then collected a large force,§ were vigoroufly 
attacked by Abdul Sumct Khan, the governor of Lahore, who 

* Bhahauder Shah died about the year 17 12. 

t I his Emperor reigned only a few months. 

% Furruck Mr's reign continued from i7»2-3 to 1719. 

§ The Sicque forces amounted, it is faid, to 20,000 cavalry. 

Vol. I. L 1 gave 


gave them battle near the fort of Loghur • and gained a decifive 
victory. Thofc who efcaped took fhelter with Bunda in Loghur, 
but being clofcly inverted, and reduced to extreme diftrefs from 
hunger, they furrendeted at difcretion.-f- The captives were con- 
veyed in triumph to Dehli, where being exhibited in an ignominious 
manner to the inhabitants of the city, they met a deferved fate, for 
their favage and often unprovoked cruelties. Yet they met it with 
an undaunted firmnefs, and died amidft the wondering praife of 
the populace. 

Having thus briefly related the origin of the Sicques,^ with a 
chronological notice of their ten priefts, and the iflue of Bunda's 
attempt to eftablifh an independent dominion, I will interrupt the 
hiftorical narrative at this period, by a fummary defcription of cer- 
tain domeftic ordinances eftablilhed by Nanock and his fucceflbrs. 
The perfon denxous of becoming a member of the Sicque doctrine, 
is conducted into the pre fence of five or more of their people, of 
any clafs or profeffion, aflembled for the occafion, when one of 
them pours into the hollow of his hand a little water, which, being 
touched by the toe of each of the Sicques, the profelyte fwallows, 

• Situate about one hundred miles to the north-weft of Lahore, 
t This event happened in 17 14. 

X The Sicques affix to their proper name the word Sing, which fignifying a lion 
in the Sanfcrit language, the appellation of Sing belongs properly, to the military 
order. 1 he civil body of the people, artisans, merctunts, and ail the lower clafles, 
being denominated SUfuis i or difciples. 


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previoufly repeating the words " Wab* goeroyee ia kbalfab, wab 
" gooroojeeka fuitab" After the performance of this obligation, a 
cup filled with fherbet is introduced, out of which he drinks five 
times, and repeats at intervals the afore-mentioned ejaculation. 
At the conch, lion of this ceremony, the convert is inftru&ed in 
the ufe of a prayer of great length, in which the religious, moral, 
and political duties of a Sicque are fet forth, and the obfervance of 

The firft part of the initiation obferved in admitting a profe- 
lyte, denotes the equality of the followers of Nanock, and is defigned 
to deftroy that fabric of ceremony and form, which the Hindoos 
are now taught to confider as the effential principle of their reli- 
gion : but the purpofe of the Sicque priefts in elevating the new 
religion on this fimple bale, has been but partially executed. The 
military Sicques permit the hair of the head and beard to grow 
long j they ufually fix an iron bracelet on the left hand, and they 
are prohibited the ufe of tobacco. Thefe regulations, which were 
probably inftkuted by their law-givers to diftinguilh them from 
other nations, are now become duties of a primary clafs, and feem 

* Thefe words, compofed of the Arabic and Hindoo languages, convey a benedic- 
ticMi on the government of the Sicques, and on the memory of their priefts. The 
Sicques falute each other by the exprcifion Wab Guru, without any inclination of the 
body, or motion of the hand. The government at large, and their armies, are deno- 





almoft to form the cffcncc of their creed * By a law of Nanock, 
widows are expreflly forbidden to deftroy themfclves at the death 
of their hufbands, and are permitted to renew the ceremonies of 
marriage. But fo ftrong is yet the adherence of the Sicques who 
have been converted from the Hindoo tribes, to the ancient cuftoro* 
of their country, that many of their women are feen afeending the 
funeral pile ; nor are they ever induced to enter a fecond time into 
the connubial ftate. The Sicques, after the manner of the Hin- 
doos, bury their dead ; and they oblige the Mahometan converts 
to adopt the like ufage. They hold a lamentation for the death of 
any perfon criminal, and equally unjuft as to be afflicted with 
grief at the payment of an equitable debt, or the furrender of a 
truft. Their belief of a future ftate feems to correfpond in moft 
of its parts with the metempfychofis of the Hindoos and as a 
(ketch of that fyftem has been already given, any further explana- 
tion of it is unneceflary. 

The Sicque nation is compofed of two diftinct fe&s, or orders 

* This would appear to be an effc& naturally produced in the minds of the bulk 
of mankind, who eagerly fix their attention and their affections on exterior objects j 
which having been taught to behold, with fentiments of relpcci and religious enthu- 
iiafm they become fo ftrongly attached to them, that a portion of temporal welfare, 
with the hope of future happinefs, feems among many nations to depend on a rigorous 
obfervance of form. A confpicuous example of this difpofition was evinced in the 
rage which the Ruffians manifefttd on being obliged by Peter to fluve their beards. 
The prince perhaps encountered lefs d inger 4t>J difficulty in giving a new form and 
new nujijicrs to the empire, than in jiccouipliiliing that change in the pcrfons of his 


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of people j thofe who compofe the moft ancient one are denomi- 
nated Khualafah* and adhere, with little deviation, to the inftitu- 
tions of Nanock, and the eight fucceeding priefts ; in obedience 
to which, the Khualafah feci are ufually occupied in civil and do* 
medic duties. They cut off the hair of their heads and beards, 
and in their manners and appearance refemble the ordinary clafles 
of the Hindoos.f . , 

The modern order of the Sicques, entitled Khalfo, was founded 
by Govind Sing ; who, deviating from the ordinances of his pre- 
deceuors, imparted a ftrong military fpirit to his adherents, whole 
zealous , attachment enabled him to indulge the bent of a fierce 
and turbulent temper, and to give fcope to an ambition, naturally 
arifing from the power which his popularity had created. Go- 
vind Sing is fajd to have reftriaed his fectaries from the ufe of to- 
bacco, and to have enjoined them to permit the growth of the 
beard, and the -hair, of the head. The military divifion of the 
people is com poled of the Khalfa feci, which, from a native harfh- 
nefs of feature^ an.d haughtinefs of deportment, is confpicuoufly 
difcriminated from tkarof the Khualafah, and other clailesof the 
foreign converts. 

For the fpace of feventy years after the death of Nanock, the 

. • . ... . * 

• Khualafah conveys virtually the fame meaning in the Arabic, as Kbalfaby which, 
Cgnifiei pure, genuine, ice. 

f 1 have been informed that matrimonii connections are occafionally formed be- 
tween the Hindoo*, and KhuaLjah Sicquea. 



growth of the Sicques was flow, and their conduct was regulated 
by a temperate difcretion. But when the Moghul empire had re- 
ceived its mortal wound from the commotions which arofe amongft 
the fons and the grandfons of Aurungzebe ; when it was no longer 
guided by the ikilful and vigorous hand which had difFufed wifdom 
and fpirit throughout its vaft machine, the difciples of Nanock 
iffued into the field, and participated in the varying fortunes of the 
day. The rebellions of the diflant provinces, and the factions 
and intrigues of the court, events which rapidly followed the death 
of A uning zebe, gave a powerful aid to the exertions of the Sic- 
ques ; who improving the favourable occafion, carried their de- 
predations, even ih the reign of Bhahauder Shah, to the environs 
of the capital. The fituation • of the country where the doctrine 
of the Sicquei had been the moft widely promulgated, and where 
they firft formed a military body, contributed to augment their 
power, as well as afford (helter againft a fuperior force of their 
enemies. On the (kirts of forefts and mountains, impervious to 
cavalry, they enjoyed alfo the benefits arifing from the vicinity of 
an opulent populous territory, which at once afforded a ftorc of 
converts and plunder. 

The Sicque common-wealth acquired an active frrength from 
the fpirit and valour of Bunda, who had infpired them with a zeal, 
which rendered meritorious every act of cruelty to the enemies of 

• In the vicinity of Ac Punjab mountains. 

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their faith, and gave their attacks, until oppofed by the collected 


force of the empire, an irrefiftible impulfe. The fuccefs of this 
fierce adventurer, had allured to his Hand ai d a numerous body of 
profelytes : fome to obtain a protection againft the rapacity of the 
Sicque government, others to take fhelter from the oppreflions or 
juft demands of the empire : whM many embraced the new doc- 
trine, from the hope of participating the plunder of the Punjab. 
The larger portion of the converts were of the tribe of Jatts * and 
Goojers ; a people who are chiefly feen in the northern parts of 
India. They are efteemed fkilful and active kufbandmen, but no- 
torious for a turbulent and reftlefs temper. 

The defeat and death of Bunda effected a total definition of 
the power of the Sicques, and, oftenfibly, an extirpation of their 
feet. An edict was iffued by Furrucfc Sir, directing that every 
Sicque falling into die hands of his officers, fhould on a refufal of 
embracing the Mahometan faith, be put to the fword. A valuable 
reward was alfo given by the emperor, for the head of every 
Sicque ; and fuch was the keen fpirit that animated the perfeco- 
tion, fuch the fuccefs of the exertions, that the name of a Sicque 
no longer exifted in the Moghul dominion. Thofe who fall ad- 
hered to the tenets of Nanock, either fled into the mountains at- 
the head of the Punjab, or cut off their hair, and exteriorly re- 
nounced the profeffion of their religion. - 

• The Khalfah Sicques hare largely originated from thefe tribes. 


i 7 2 f*6rster*s travels. 

After a period of more than thirty years, the fpark that 
had lain concealed amongft the ruins of the fabrick of Nanock, 
burft forth, and produced a flame which hath never been extin- 
guifhed. It is mentioned that the Sicque forces appeared in arms 
at the period of Nadir Shah's return from Dehli ;* when the Per- 
fian army, encumbered with fpoil, and regardlefs of order, was at- 
tacked in the rear by detached predatory parties of Sicque cavalry, 
who occafionally fell upon the baggage-guards, and acquired a large 
plunder. During the periods of tumult and diftrefs, which fol- 
lowed the Perfian,-f- and the firft Afghan invafion, the Sicques 
emerged more confpicuoufly from their places of concealment ; and 
collecting a numerous party of promifcuous adventurers, they foon 
rofe into military importance. Even at the low ebb to which the 
Sicques had been reduced by the deftruclion of their force,, the 
death of their leader, and the profcription of their feci, they had 
continued to refort fecretly to Am rut Sir; and as the attention of 
the empire became, at fubfequent periods, fixed on fubjects that 
demanded an undivided force, the Sicques were not molefted in 
vifiting their favourite place of worfliip, which gradually rofe into 
the capital of their narrow territory. Meer Munnoo.j: the go- 
vernor of Lahore in the reign of Ahmed Shah,§ alarmed at an 

{ k 

• »739- 

t From the year 1739 to 1746. 

% Th:. fon of kutnmer mi Dein, the vizier of Mahomet Shah. 

§ 1 his prince fueceeded to the empire in 1747, and was depofed in 1753. 


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cncreafe of power, the evils of which had been already manifefted 
by the devaluations of the Sicques in his own country, made a 
vigorous attack on them ; and it is fuppofed that their force would 
then have been annihilated, had not this people found a ftrenu- 
ous advocate in his minifter Korah Mul, who was himfelf of the 
Khualarah feci, and diverted Meer Munnoo from reaping the full 
fruits of the fuperiority he had gained. 

Adina Beg Khan, an officer in the fervice of Meer Mun- 
noo, had been fent with an army into the centre of the Sicque dif- 
tri&s, which he over-run ; and, encountering their army fome 
time in the year 1 749, had defeated it with great (laughter* A 
permanent accommodation was ultimately enectea tnrougn tne 
mediation of Korah Mul, between the Sicques and the governor 
of Lahore, who being engaged in operations that led to more in- 
terefting objects, the Sicques were left at liberty to acquire ftrength, 
and enlarge their territory, which extended from the vicinity of 
Lahore, to the foot of the mountains. Whilft Korah Mul lived, 
his influence over the Sicques confined them to their own limit, and 
retrained their depredations. But the death of this officer, who 
was (lain f in an aaion fought with the Afghans, and the tumult 
which arofe at the deceafe of Munnoo,^ from the various compc- 

• This a&ion was fought near the village of Mackavaul, in the northern diftri£h 
©f the Punjab. 

+ The death of Korah Mul happened in the year 1751. 
t Meer Munnoo died in the year 1752. 

Vol. I. Mm titors 


titors to the government of Lahore, enabled the Sicques to fix the 
bafts of a power, which, though feverely lhaken at a fubfequent 
period, has raifed them from a taw Ids banditti to the rank of fo- 
vereigns of an extenfive dominion. The charm which had fo 
powerfully operated in augmenting and confolidating the fpacious 
empire of the Indian Moghuls, and had in the eaftcrn world pro- 
claimed it invincible, was now broken ; and a wide theatre was 
opened, in which every band of bold adventurers had an ample 
fcope to exercife their courage, and where the moil alluring ob- 
jects were held out to the grafp of ambition and avarice. The * 
fouthern territories had been difmembered from the empire and 
the Pcrfians and Afghans, the Mahrattas and the Sicques, had 
feverally plundered and laid wafte the northern provinces, and tht 

After the death of Meer Munnoo, and a rapid fucceffion of 
fleeting governors, the government of Lahore devolved on Adina 
Beg Khan }* and the court of Dehli, in oppofition to the arrange- 
ments of the Duranny Ahmed Shah, who had annexed the Lahore 
province to his dominion, avowedly fupported the power which 
Adina Beg had affumed in the Punjab. The courage and military 
experience of this officer found an active employment in curbing 
the turbulent and rapacious fpirit of the Sicques : but aware of the 
advantages that would arife from a confederacy with a people whofe 

• The officer who defeated the Sicques at the battle of Mackaraul. 


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depredations, accompanied with every fpecies of rapine, could not 
be prevented without continued warfare, Adina Beg made an al- 
liance with the Sicques, founded on a fchcme of combined hoftili- 
tics againft the Afghans, whofe territories * he invited them to 
lay wafte, without requiring participation of the booty. Every 
infringement of the compact being feverely refented by Adina Beg, 
the Sicques were rarely feen interrupting the peace of his govern- 

The court of Dehli, having by intrigue and occafional military 
aids, zealoufly contributed to promote the fuccefles of the Lahore 
chief, Ahmed Shah brought an army in the year 1756 into India, 
to recover the pofleffion of the Punjab, and to punifh Ghaze-ud- 
Dien, the minifter of Alumguir the Second, who had affumed an 
abfolute authority in the capital. Adina Beg, an active fupporter 
of the minifter's interefts, which were clofely united with his own, 
not having a fufficient force to meet Ahmed Shah Duranny in the 
field, fled into the adjacent mountains, where he remained m con- 
cealment until the departure of the Afghan prince to his northern 

In the year 1757, or 1758, a numerous army of Mahrattas,-f 

M m 2 after 

• The Afghani were at that time pofTefled of a tra<3 of country, reaching from 
the Chinnaun river to the Indus. 

t They had been invited into Hindoftan by Ghaze-ud-Dicn, to fupport an ad- 
tniniftration which was detefted by the people, and oppofed by a party at court. Had 




after fubduing the adjacent territory, arrived in the city of Dehli, 
where their chiefs aliumed an absolute fway. ,Adina Beg, aware of 
the benefits of an alliance with the Mahrattas, rcprefented to their 
chiefs, that the Punjab garrifons, weakened by the departure of 
Ahmed Shah, would fall an eafy conqueft to their arms, which he 
offered to reinforce with his party, and the influence he poflefled 
in that quarter. The Mahratta army moved without delay into 
the Punjab, and, expelling the Afghans from Sirhend and Lahore, 
reduced to their power a tract of country that extended to the 
river Jaylum.* National commotions calling the principal Mak- 
ratta officers into the Decan, they appointed Adina Beg Khan, 
who had largely promoted their fuccefs, the governor of Lahore : 
but he died early in the following year, at an advanced age, 
highly celebrated in Upper India for his military and political 

The Sicques, awed by the fuperiour power of the Mahrattas, 
and fearful of incurring the refentraent of Adina Beg, had not 
during his government, carried their depredations into the low 
country. In the courfe of the feveral expeditions which the Af- 
ghans made into India under Ahmed Shah, they were feverely 
harraffed by the Sicques, who cut off many of their detached par- 

not the arms of Ahmed Shah the Duranny prevailed over the Mahrattas at the battle 
of Pannifrett, it is probable that the Mahometan power would have been extinguifhed 
in India. 

• The fifth Punjab river from the caftvrard. 



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tics ; and evinced, in the various fchemes of annoying the Afghans, 
an indefatigable intrepidity. 

Ahmed Shah, having in conjunction with the Mahometan 
chiefs of Hindoftan, routed the combined forces of the Hindoos at 
the battle of Pannifrett, in the beginning of the year 176 1, and 
driven the Mahrattas from the northern provinces, meditated a 
full revenge on the Sicques ; who, during a fmall interval of his 
abfence, had in the latter end of the fame year, feized on the largeft 
divilion of the Lahore province. Early in the year 1762, he en- 
Urzd the Punjab, which he over-run with a numerous army, dif- 
perfing the Sicques wherever they appeared, and difFufing a ge- 
neral terror by the havock which marked his invafion. The 
Afghan foon became poflcfled of all the low country, and the 
Sicques difmayed at his rapid fuccefs, and the cruelties exercifed 
by his fierce foldiery, abandoned the plains, and fought a fhelter 
with their families in the, (kirts of the mountains. A large party 
of Sicques had retired towards the northern diftricls* of Sirhend, 
which being more than an hundred miles diftant from Lahore, 
the ftation of the Afghan army, they were not apprehenfive 
of any immediate attack. But the motions and onfet of Ahmed 
Shah were equally rapid and dreadful. He fell fuddenly on this 
body in February 1762, having marched from Lahore in lefs 


• The villages of Goojerwal and Baffpour, were at that time their common 
Places of refuge. 


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than two tlays, and cut fo pieces, it is faid, twenty-five thou- 
fand of their cavalry. The Sicques, in their day of fuccefs, having 
defiled and delhoyed the mofques and other facred places of the 
Mahometans, compelling alfo many of them to embrace the faith 
of Nanock, now felt the favage vengeance of their enemies. 
Amrut Sir was rafed to the ground, and the facred waters choaked 
up with its ruins. Pyramids were erected, and covered with the 
heads of flaughtered Sicques ; and it is mentioned, that Ahmed Shah 
caufed the walls of the principal mofques which had been polluted 
by the Sicques to be waflied with their blood, that the contamina- 
tion might be removed, and the ignominy offered to the religion 
of Mahomet, expiated. Yet thefe examples of ferocious rigour 
did not quell the native courage of the Sicques, who ftill continue 
to iflue from their faftnefles, to hover on the rear of the Afghan 
armies, and to cut off their fcattered parties. 

Ahmed Shah, in the clofe of the year 1762, returned into 
Afghaniflan, which being compofed of provinces recently con- 
quered or acquired, and inhabited by a warlike fierce people, de- 
manded a vigilant perfonal attention. A body of his troops, com- 
manded by an officer of diftinguifhed rank, had been (rationed in 
the Lahore territory, and in the capital, which was ftrongly gar- 
rifoned. But foon after the march of Ahmed Shah, the Sicques 
were feen defcending from their various holds on the Punjab, which 
they rapidly laid wafte, and after feveral defultory actions, in which 
the Afghans were defeated, they befieged, and what feems extraor- 

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dinary, they took the city of Lahore j where wtldjy indulging the 
enmity that had never ceafed to inflame them againrt theie fevcre 
fcourges of their nation, they committed violent outrages. The 
rnofques that had been rebuilt or reftored to ufe by the Maho- 
metans, were demolilhed with every mark of contempt and in- 
dignation ; and the Afghans, in chains, wafhed the foundations 
with the blood of hogs. They were alfo compelled to excavate 
the refet voir at Ararut Sir, which in the preceding year they had 
filled up. The Sicques, however, keenly actuated by refentment, 
fet a bound to the impulfe of revenge j and though the Afghan 
maffacre and perfecution muft have been deeply imprinted on 
their minds, they did not, it is faid, deftroy one prifoner in cold 

The records of the Sicques give a relation of a battle fought 
with the Afghans, previoufly to the capture of Lahore : but as 
its aflerted iffue does not correfpond with the feries of fuccefs, 
which confpicuoufly in India accompanied the Afghan arms under 
Ahmed Shall, or (rand fupported by any collateral proof to which 
I have had accefs, I am neceftarily led to doubt fome parts of the 
Sicque's relation. This event is faid to have happened in October 
1762, when the collected body of the Sicque nation, amounting to 
fixtf thoufand cavalry, had formed a junction at the ruins of Amrut 
Sir, for the purpofe of performing fome appointed ceremony, and 
where they refolved, expecting the attack, to pledge their national 
exiftence on the event of a battle. Ahmed Shah, at that time en- 


camped at Lahore, marched with a ftrong force to Amrut Sir,* 
and immediately engaged the Sicques ; who, roufed by the fury of 
a defperate revenge, in light alio of the ground facred to the 
founders of their religion, whofe monuments had been deftroyed 
by the enemy they were then to combat, difplayed, during a bloody 
conteft, which lafted from the morning until night, an enthufi- 
aftic and fierce courage, which ultimately forced Ahmed Shah to 
draw off his army and retire with precipitation to Lahore. The 
Sicques, it is alfo laid, purfued the enemy to that city, which they 
took after a (hort fiege ; and that Ahmed Shah, having made his 
efcape before the furrender, crofted the Indus. Any probability of 
this event can only be reconciled by a fuppofition, that the army 
of Ahmed Shah had fuffered fome extraordinary reducrious, pre*, 
vioufly to the period in which this occurrence f is faid to have 
happened. Without a further difcuffion of this clouded faft, we 
will proceed to the common annals of the day, where it is feen 
that the Duranny returned into the Punjab, in the autumn of 
1763, when he retook Lahore, and again drove the Sicques from 
the low country. The fuccefies of this prince, though decided at 
the moment, were not followed by either a benefit to himfelf or 
to the country he conquered ; and could be only traced by (laugh- 
ter and rapine for in the courfe of the following year, during his 

* This place is about forty miles to the weft ward of Lahore. 

f A total eclipfc of the fun is laid to hare happened on the day of adion. 


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fhort abfence, the Sicqucs ravaged the Punjab, expelled the Af- 
ghan garrifons, and purfued their fortune with fo vigorous a ra- 
pidity, that during the year 1764, they had over-run, and feized 
on, an extent of territory reaching from the borders of the Indus 
to the diftricls of. Dehli. 

to Shah, in the three following years, continued to 

maintain a defultory war with the Sicques ; but poflefling no trea- 
fure in India, fearing alfo the efFeas of a remote refidence from 
his native dominion, he muft have at length flirunk from the dif- 
ficulties of conquering a numerous people, who when driven from 
the plains, poiTefied impenetrable retreats in forefts and moun- 
and, what was more dreadful to their enemies, an invincible 

After the year 1767, the period of his laft campaign in 
India, Ahmed Shah, feems to have wholly relinquished the defign 
of fubduing the Punjab. The Sicqucs now became the rulers of 
a large country, in every part of which they eftablifhed an undi- 
vided authority, and raifed in it the folid ftrufrure of a religion, 
in the propagation and defence of which, their perfevering valour 
merit a common applaufe. 

Timur Shah, the reigning prince of Afghaniftan, the fon of 
Ahmed Shah, had made war on the Sicqucs with various fuccefs. 
During the interval of his laft campaign in India, he wrefted from 
them the city, with a large divifion of the province of Moultan j 
which the Sicques, contrary to the fpirit of their national cha- 
Vot. I. N n racier, 

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rafter, evacuated after a weak refinance. This furrender might on 
the firft view be termed pufillanimous, efpecially when the inactive 
difpofition of Timur is confidered ; but it feems to have been a 
natural confequence of their eternal divWions, and the fears enter- 
tained by the body at large, of the encreafe of individual j>ower. 
The dominions of the Siccjues, whole limits are ever in a (rate of 
fluctuation , was, in fhe year 1782, bounded on the north by the 
ciiain 01 mountains mat extenci 111 an odiiciui iiiic acrota mc iieaci 
of the Punjabi on the eaft by the poileflions of die emperor and 
his officers, which reach to Pannifrett and Kurrwaul ; on the foutli- 
caft by the Agra diftricts ; on the fouth by Moultan ; and on the 
weft by the Indus, except where the town and independencies of 
Attack, and fome petty chiefships, are interfperfed. 

The Sicques have reduced the largeft portion of the territory 
of Zabitah Khan, leaving him little more than the fort of Ghous 
Ghur, with a very limited domain in its vicinity. This chief, the 
degenerate fon of Najcb-ud-Dowlah, has made no vigorous effort 
in his defence but thinking to footh them, and divert their en- 
croachments, aflumed the name of a Sicciue. and oftenfiblv. it 
is faid, became a convert to the faith of Nanoclo* It is not feen 
that he derived any benefit from his apoftacy ? for at the period of 
my journey through the Duab, the Sicques were inverting his fort> 



• Durm Sing, was the name taken by Zabitah Khan. He was fuccceded by hit 
fon Gholam Bhahaudcr, in 1785, who, though an acYive foldicr, and refpeaed by the 
Sicques, is not emancipated from their power. 


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and he was reduced to the defperate alternative of calling in a body 
of their mercenaries to his afliftance. 

In the beginning of the year 1783, a party of Sicques tra- 
veling the Ghous Ghur diftricls, approached the Ganges, where 
it forms the weftern limit of Rohilcund, with an intention of 
eroding the river, and invading the country of the vizier. Being 
at that time in Rohilcund, I witneffed the terror and general 
alarm which prevailed amongft the inhabitants, who, deferting 
the open country, had retired into forts and places inacccfliblc to 
cavalry. The Sicques, perceiving the difficulty of palling a river 
in the face of the vizier's troops, which were pofted on the 
caftern bank, receded from their purpofc. This faft has been 
adduced to fliew that the Sicques command an uninterrupted 
paflage to the Ganges.* 

Thus have I laid before you, according to the moll fubftantial 
authorities that I could obtain, the origin of the Sicques ; their 
firft territorial eftablimment, and the outlines of the progrefs they 
made, in extending a fpacious dominion, and confolidating the 
power which they at this day poffefs. We have fcen this people, 
at two different periods, combating the force of the Moghul em- 
pire, and fo feverely deprefled by its fuperior itrength, that the 
exiftence of their feci was brought to the edge of annihilation. 

• The Sicquc forces aficmbled again in the beginning of the ytar 1785, when they 
entered the province of RohilcunJ, and having laid it wartc, for the fpace of cne 
hundred miles, they returned unmolcflcd. 

N n 2 The 

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The Afghan war involved them in a feries of ftill more grievous 
calamity ; as they had then laid the foundation of a growing 
power, and more fcnfibly felt the ravages of a formidable foe. 
They were driven from the fanc"tuary of their religion, and perfe- 
cted with a rage which feemed to keep pace with the encreafing 
ftrength and inveteracy of their enemy : yet we have feen, that in 
the lowcft ebb of fortune, they retained the fpirit of refource } 
that they boldly feized on every hold which ottered fupport ; 
and, by an invincible perfeverance, that they ultimately rofe fu- 
perior in a contefl: with the moft potent prince of his age. 
Grand auxiliary caufes operated alfo in the formation and final 
eftablifhment of the Sicques* dominion. It hath already been 
noticed, that the firft efforts of this people commenced at a 
time when the Moghul empire loft its energy and vigour ; when 
intcftine commotions, the intrigues of a luxurious court, and the 
defection of diftant governors, had promoted the increafe of in- 
dividual interefts, and a common relaxation of allegiance. 

The decifive fuperiority obtained over the Sicques, by Meer 
Munnoo, would, we muft believe, with a judicious application of 
its ufes, have removed to a farther diftance the rank which this 
ftate now maintains in Hindoftan. To develope the actions of 
men, with whofe hiftory we are trivially acquainted, would be fa- 
bricating too refined a fyftem of fpeculation ; nor would I now 
inveftigate fo obfeure a fubjecl, were it not to generally obferve, 
that the prefervation of the Sicques from the effects of Meer 


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Munnoo's fuccefs, appears to have been largely promoted by the 
interference of his miniftcr Khorah Mul, who being himfelf a 
Sicque, naturally became a trufty advocate of the fec~t j and who, 
it is faid, completed his afcendancy over the Mahometan, by a 
confiderable donation. But the diftracled ftate of Ahmed Shah's 
Afghan and Perfian dominion, which urgently called on a per- 
fonal adminiftration, afforded, the Sicques the moft favourable oc- 
cafions of accompUfliing the conqueft of the Punjab ; and it is 
probable, that, had the Afghan prince been enabled to prolong 
his campaigns in Hindoftan, the Sicques would not, during his 
life, have attained any extenfive degree of national confequence. 

I find an embarraflment in applying a dirtinct term to the 
form of the Sicque government, which, on the firft view, bears an 
appearance of ariftocracy ; but a clofer examination difcovers a 
large vein of popular power branching through many of its parts. 
No honorary or titular diftinction is conferred on any member * 
of the ftate, and the chiefs are treated with a deference that would 
fcem to arife only from the military charges they may at the inftant 
"be inverted with, and from a felf-preferving regard to the fubordi- 
nation neceffarily required in conducting an armed body. Though 
orders are iflued in a Sicque army, and a fpecies of obedience ob- 
served, puniftiments are rarely inflicted j and the chiefs, who 

-" •*• » 

• The pofterity of the ten priefls arc occafionally denominated purgackbs, that is, 
Jefcendaatt of a faint, or prophet. 

r , often 


often command parties of not more than fifty men, being nume- 
rous, its motions are tumultuous and irregular. An equality of 
rank is maintained in their civil focicty, which no clafs of men, 
however wealthy or powerful, is fuffered to break down. At the 
periods when general councils of the nation were convened, which 
confided of the army at large, every member had the privilege of 
delivering his opinion ; and the majority, it if faid, decided on 
the iubjeft in debate. The Khalfah Sicques, even of the loweft 
order, are turbulent people, and poflefs a haughtinefs of deport- 
ment which, in the common occurrences of life, peculiarly marks 
their character. Examples of this difpofrtion I have myfelf wit* 
nefled, and one of them I think merits a diftincl: notice. In tra- 
velling through the Siringnaghur country, our party was joined by 
a Sicque horfeman, and being defirous of procuring his acquaint 
tance, I ftudioufly offered him the various attentions which men 
obferve to thofe they court. But the Sicque received my advances 
with a fixed reierve and difdain, giving me, however, no individual 
caufe of offence ; for his deportment to the other paflengers was 
not lefs contemptuous. His anfwer, when I aiked him the name 
of his chief, was wholly conformable to the obfervations I had 
made of his nation. He told me ( in a tone of voice, and with 
an expreflion of countenance, which feemed to revolt at the idea 
of fervitude) that he difdained an earthly fuperiour, and acknow- 
ledged no other mafter than his prophet ! 

The civil and military government of the Sicques, before a 



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common intercft had ccafed to a&uate its operations, was con- 
duced by general and limited affemblies, which prefided over the 
different departments of the ftate. The grand convention, called 
in their language Goorimotta, was that in which the army met to 
tranfaft the more important affairs of the nation ; as the declara- 
tion of war or peace, forming alliances, and detaching parties on 
the fervice of the year. The amount of the contributions levied 
on the public account was reported to this affembly, and divided 
among the chiefs, proportionably to the number of their troops. 
They were at the fame time obliged to diftribute a certain (hare of 
this property to their foldiers, who, on any caufe of diffatisfac- 
tion, made no hefitation in quitting their fervice, and following a 
more popular leader. Subordinate officers were eftablifhed for re- 
giftering the political correfpondence of the Mate, and for providing 
warlike (lores ; and the adminiftration of ecclefiaftical affairs was 
entrufted to a certain focicty of religeufc, compofed chiefly of the 
defcendants of their original priefts, but they did not poffefs any 
influence in the temporal regulation of the ftate. Thefe were the 
principal ordinances enacted by the firft chiefs, when the people 
were united, and a common obje6r. governed their public con- 
duct. The dominions of the Sicques, now widely extended, have 
been flnce divided into numerous dates, which purfuc an inde- 
pendent intereft, without a regard to general policy. The grand 
affembly is now rarely fummoned, nor have the Sicques, fince the 
Afghan war, been embarked in any united caufe. 


. Their military force may be faid to confift effentially of ca- 
valry } for though fome artillery is maintained, it is auxwardly 
managed, and its ufes ill underftood ; and their infantry, held in 
low eftiniation, ufually garrifon the forts, and are employed in the 
meaner duties of the fervice. A Sicque horfeman is armed with 
a matchlock and fabre of excellent metal, and his horfe is ftrong 
and well formed. In this matter I fpeak from a perfonal know- 
ledge, having in the courfe of my journey feen two of their par- 
ties, each of which amounted to about two hundred horfemen. 
They were clothed in white vefts,* and their arms were pre- 
ferved in good order: the accoutrements, confiding of priming 
horns and ammunition pouches, were chiefly covered with Eu- 
ropean fcarlet cloth, and ornamented with gold lace. The pre- 
dilection of the Sicques for the match-lock mufquet, and the 
conftant ufe they make of it, caufes a difference in their man- 
ner of attack from that of any other Indian cavalry; a party, 
from forty to fifty, advance in a quick pace to the diftance of 
a carabine fliot from the enemy, and then, that the fire may 
be given with the greater certainty the horfes are drawn up, 
and their pieces difcharged when, fpeedily retiring about a 
hundred paces, they load and repeat the fame mode of annoy- 
ing the enemy. The horfes have been fo expertly trained to 
the performance of this operation, that on receiving a ftroke of 

• A long calico gown, having a clofc body and fleeves, with a white flcirt. 


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the hand, they flop from a full career. But it is not by this 
mode of combat that the Sicques have become a formidable 
people. Their fuccefles and conquefts have largely originated 
from an activity unparalleled by other Indian nations, from 
their endurance of exceffive fatigue, and a keen rcfentment of 
injuries. The perfonal endowments of the Sicques are derived 
from a temperance of diet, and a forbearance from many of 
thofe fenfual pleafures which have enervated the Indian Maho- 
metans. A body of their cavalry has been known to make 
marches of forty or fifty miles, and to continue the exertion 
for many fucceflive days. 

The forces of this nation muft be numerous, though I am 
not pofleiTed of aay fubftantial document for afcertaining the 
amount. A Sieque will confidently fay, that his country can 
furnifti three hundred thouiand cavalry, and, to authenticate the' 
aflertion, affirms that every perfon, holding even a fmall pro- 
perty, is provided with a horfe, match-lock, and fide- arms. But 
In qualification of this account, if we admit that the Sicques 
when united can bring two hundred thoufand horfe into the field, 
their force in cavalry is greater than that of any other ftate in 
Kindoftan. A paflage which I extracted from a memoir,* written 
ait Dehli in 17771 exhibits a lively picture of this people in 
their military capacity. " The Sicques," it reprefents, " are 

• I believe it was written by Colonel Tolicr. 

Vol. I. O o « in 


*• in general ftrong and well madej accuftorned from their infancy 
" to the raoft laborious life, and hardeft fare, they make marches, 

'« and undergo fatigues that really appear aftonifhing. In their 
" excurfions they cany no tents or baggage, except, perhaps, a 
" fmall tent for the principal officer : the reft Archer themfclves 
* under blankets, which ferve them alfo in the cold weather to 

" They have commonly two, fome of them three, horfes each,' of 
" the middle fize, ftrong, acYrve, and mild tempered. The pro- 
*• vinces of Lahore and Mouhan, noted for a breed of the beft 
" horfes in Hindoflan, afford them an ample fupply ; and indeed 
» they take the greateft care to encreafe it by all means in their 

power, i nougn tney make merry on tne aemue or any ot tneir 
" brethren, they mourn for the death of a horfe : thus (hewing 
" their love of an animal fo neceflary to them in their profellional 

capacity. The food of the Sicques is of the coarfeft kind, and 
n fuch as the pooreft people in Hindoftan ufe from ncceflity. 
«* Bread, baked in afhes, and foaked in a mafli made of different 
" forts of pulfe, is the beft difh, and fuch as they never indulge 

in but wncn at run leiiure ; otnenvile, vetches and tares, nattily 
" parched, is all they care for. They abhor fmoaking tobacco, 
" for what reafon I cannot difcover ; but intoxicate themfelvcs 
" freely with fpirits of their own country manufacture. A cup 
" of the laft they never fail taking after a fatigue at night. Their 
'** drefs is extremely fcanty : a pair of long blue drawers, and a 

" kind 

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n kind of checkered plaid, a part of which is fattened round the 
" waift, and the other thrown over the (houlder, with a mean 
?• turban, form their clothing and equipage. The chiefs are dif- 
'* tinguiftied by wearing fome heavy gold bracelets on their wrifts, 
£ and ibmetimes a chain of the fame metal bound round their 
" turbans, and by being mounted on better horfes : otherwife, np 
i' <fiftm#ion appears amongft them. The chiefs are numerous, 
'* fome of whom have the command of ten or twelve thouland ca- 
f* valry j but this power is confined to a fmall number, the in- 
" ferior officers maintaining from one to two thoufand, and many 
V not more than twenty or thirty horfes > a certain quota of which 
f is furnifhed by the. chief, the greater part being the individual 
« property of the horfcraen:* : ,- 

From the fpirit of independence Co invariably infufed amongrt 
them, their mutual jealoufy, and a rapacious roving temper, the 
Sicqucs at this day are feldom ften co-operating in national concert, 
but actuated by the influence of an individual ambition, or private 
diftru/r, they purtuc fiich plans only as coincide with thefe mo- 
tives. An example of their forces being engaged iti oppofite in- 
tcrcfts, has been noticed in the cafe of Mhah Sing, who fuccoured 
the Rajah of Jumbo, againfl: the Sicque party, which had invaded 
his country. Before the chiefs of the Mountaineers country, at 
the head of the Punjab, were reduced to a tributary ftate, fevere 
depredations were committed on them by the Sicques, who plun- 
dered and deftroyed their habitations, carried off the cattle, and, if 

O o 2 ftrong 


ftrong and well formed, the male children, who were made con- 
verts to the faith of Nanock. But fince the payment of a fixed 
tribute has been ftipulated, which does not amount to more than 
five per cent, on the revenue, the Mountaineers are little molefted, 
except when the Sicques have been called in to adjuft their demeftlc 

The extenfive and fertile territory of the Sicques, and their 
attachment and application in the midft of warfare to the occupa- 
tions of agriculture, muft evidently produce a large revenue. The 
diftri&s dependant on Lahore in the reign of Aurungzebe, pro- 
duced, according to Mr. Beroier, a revenue of two hundred and 
forty-fix lacks and ninety-five thoufand rupees j* and we are 
naturally led to fuppofe, from the induftrious flcill of the Sicques 
in the various branches of cultivation, that no great decreafe of 
that amount can have taken place fince the Punjab has fallen into 
their pofleflion. 

An extenfive and valuable commerce is alfo maintained in 
their country, which has been extended to diftant quarters of 
India j particularly to the provinces of Bengal and Bahar, where 
many Sicque merchants of opulence at this time refide. The Omi- 
chund who took fo aftive, though unfortunate, a (hare in the re- 
volution, which the Englifli effected in Bengal, was a Sicque ; as 

* Two millions four hundred and fixtynine thoufand five hundred pounds ft a ling, 
at two {hillings for the rupee. 

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is his adopted fon, who is now an inhabitant of Calcutta. Mer- 
chants of every nation or feet, who may introduce a traffick into 
their territories, or are eftablifhed under their government, expe- 
rience a full protection, and enjoy commercial privileges in com- 
mon with their own fubjetts. At the fame time it muft be no- 
ticed, that fuch immunities are granted only to thofe who remain 
imongft them, or import wares for the immediate fupply of the 
Sicque markets. But the foreign traders, or even travellers, who 
attempt to pafs through the Punjab, are often plundered, and 
ufually ill-treated. In the event of no moleftation being offered 
to people of this del caption, the efcape is ever fpoken of with a 
degree of joyful furprize, and a thankfgiving is offered to Provi- 
dence for the fmgular efcape. This conduct, inimical to the pro- 
grefs of civilization, and an impediment to the influx of wealth, 
proceeds from an extreme jealoufy of Grangers, added to a rapa- 
city of temper, which make them averfe to the encouragement of 
any fcheme in whofe fuccefs they do not immediately participate. 

The Sicqucs are not rigorous in their ftipulations with the 
Mahometan profelytes, who, if they abftain from beef's flefh, 
(which is held in equal abhorrence by the Sicques as by the Hin- 
doos), and perform the more oftenfible duties, as burning their, 
dead, and preferving the hair of the head, an indulgent latitude is 
.granted in all the other articles of the creed of Nanock. The 
^Alahometans who refide in the Punjab arc fubject to occafional op- 
preflion, and often to the infult of the lower clafles of the people ; 
. . among 


among whom it is not an uncommon practice to defile the places 
«tf worfhip, by throwing in the carcafes of hogs and other things 
held impure by the Muuelman law. The Mahometans are alio 
prohibited from announcing their ftated times of prayer, which, 
conformably to their ufage, is proclaimed in a loud tone of voice. 
A Sicque who in the chace fliali have (lain a wild hog, is frequently 
known to compel the firft Mahometan he meets to carry to his 
home the body of the animal; and, on being initiated into the 
rites of their religion, the Sicques will foraetimes require a Maho- 
metan convert to bind on his arm the tuflc of a boar, that by this 
act of national impurity, he may the more avowedly teftify a* re- 
nunciation and contempt of the tenets of his former faith. Thele 
facts will fufficiently mark the haughty and infulting demeanor, 
which, with few deviations, forms a prominent feature in the 
character of the military Sicques ; but we may alfo afcribe a certain 
portion of their fevere and contumelious treatment of the Maho- 
metans, to a remembrance of recent injuries. 

The difcordant interefts which agitate the Sicque nation, and 
the constitutional genius of the people, mud incapacitate them, 
during the exiftence of thefe caufes, from becoming a formidable 
ofFcnfive power ; nor are they inverted with that fpecies of execu- 
tive ftrength which is necefiary to advance and cftablifti a diftant 
conqueft. In the defence and recovery of their country, the 
Sicques difplayed a courage of the moft obftinatc kind, and mani- 
fefted a perfeverance, under the prefiure of calamities, which bear 


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an ample teftimony of native refource, when the common danger 
had roufed them to a£tion, and gave but one impulfe to their fpirit. 
Should any future caufe call forth the combined efforts of the 
Sicques to maintain the exigence of empire and religion, we may 
fee fome ambitious chief led on by his genius and fucccfs, and, 
abforbing the power of his aflbciates, difplay, from the ruins of 
their commonwealth, the ftandard of monarchy. The page of hif- 
tory is filled with the like effects, fpringing from the like caufes. 
Under fuch a form of government, I have little hefitation in fay- 
ing, that the Sicques would be foon advanced to the fir It rank 
amongil the native princes of Hindoftan } and would become a 
terror to the furrouuding ftates.* 

I am, 

Dear Sir, 

Yours, &c. 

• Mhadgee Scindia, a Mahratta chief, by feizing the relics of the Imperial au- 
thority and domain, has placed himfelf in the fituation which the Sicques mutt have 
been deftrous of occupying. This rcfolution will naturally create a national enmity, 
perhaps a conteft, between the northern branch of the Mahratta empire, and the 
S icques. 


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Il I MA I " I 


by Google 




Kafimire, Aprils 1783, 


On the 1 7th of AprU, I left Jumbo ; and, 
accompanied by a Kaftimirian fervant, who carried my baggage, 
I reached the fmall village of Dunfliaulah, after a painful 
journey on foot, of ten cones. A review of my feet, too plainly 
/hewed that they had not been proof again ft the fteep and 
rocky roads I had clambered over; indeed they had fuifered Co 
fevercly by bruifts and excoriations, that I could fcarcely walk. 

Having bound up my feet with bandages foaked in oil, I 
reached, on the 18th, though with difficulty, the viLlage of Na- 
grolah — five coffes. During thefe two Iaft days, I paid, at the 
different cuftom-houfes, certain fmall fees of office, which were 
not authorized charges j but being known to be a (hanger, and 
apparently in a condition to fatisfy the demand, I was feldoni 
permitted to pafs a cuftom-houfe unmolcfted. Though the la- 
cerations in my feet gave mc much pain, efpecially at the firll 
fetting off, I purfued my journey in good fpirits, being pro- 
• Vot. I. P p teaed 


tc6led by the quiet difpofition of the people, and Cure of pro- 
curing a good meal in the evenings, with commodious lodging. 
The firft night, we were received into a retail (hop, at Dun- 
fhaulah, where I flept on my large blanket, and fupped on 
fome fpiced meat and bifcuits, which my Jumbo hoft had pro- 
vided : and at Nagrolah we were accommodated by a Maho- 
metan family, who fupplied me with a ftanding bed. 

On the 19th, at Luttcre — eight codes. The latter part of 
the journey led me up a high and fteep hill, and the fun, then 
at its meridian height, had nearly overpowered me ; when, on a 
fudden, I found myfelf on a fummit, where fome charitable 
Hindoo had erected a fmall, but a cool, building,* plentifully 
fupplied with pots of water. Under this hofpitable ihade, I 
was permitted, though a Mahometan, to reft during the day, 
and to deep at night. Many Hindoos came in for the benefit 
of the water and fhadc, and obferving that I was lame, they 
treated me with an attentive kindnefs, and difpenfed with my 
rifing when any of their principal people entered. 

In the number of thofe who came to partake of the chari- 
table uies of this houfe, was a Mahometan, who ejaculating his 
Bifmillah>\ laid himfelf down, without farther ceremony, in the 
interior quarter of the apartment. A Hindoo of rank, accom- 

* Called, in the language of the country, Durm/alftn, which fignines M A cha»- 
" ritable foundation." 

t An Arabiclc compound word, fignifying u In the name of God." 


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panied by fcvcral attendants, entered fbon after, and obferving 
that the mendicant had occupied the moft convenient, as well 
as honorary place, and that he offered no mark of attention or 
refpeft, the Hindoo ordered that his chatties, which were heavy, 
fliould be thrown into the road. On exclaiming againft this act 
of ejection, he was told, that though the houfe was creeled for the 
purpofe of common accommodation, with no view of excluding 
any nation or feci ; yet in fome cafes, as in the prefent, an obfer- 
vance of precedency and deference was neceflary. This anecdote 
will fcrve to generally delineate the native difference betwixt the 
temper of a Hindoo and a Mahometan. What do you think 
would have been the reception of a Hindoo, particularly of a reli- 
gious order, had he come into a karavanferah, in a Mahometan 
country, and throw his brafs pot, his rice, or peafc, into an apart- 
ment which Mahometans had previoufly occupied ? Could the 
Hindoo have acted with fuch indifcretion — his punilhment would 
have been more difgraceful and fevere than death. From long 
pbfervation, I can with confidence fay, that the Hindoos are a more 
temperate people, and much more ufeful in the various relations 
of life, than any ctafs of Mahometans that have come within my 

At the vicinity of Nagrolah commence the'dirtricts of the 
Chinnanee chief, a dependant on Jumbo, who polfefles a revenue 
of about a lack of rupees. This chief docs not remit any tribute 
to his fuperior, but aflitts his government with a quota of troops 

P p 2 in 

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in the event of exigency ; and comformably to this tenure he notr 
fervcs in the campaign againft the Sicques. 

On the 20th, at Chinnanee ; a neat and populous town, fituate 
on the brow of a hill j at the foot of which, on the eaftern fide, 
runs a rapid ftream pafling to the left. This channel is patted by 
means of two (lout fir beams, one of which reaches from the more 
to an infulated rock in the centre of the current, on which it is 
fattened by wooden ftakes } and the other extends from the rock to 
the oppofite bank. The velocity with which the water was preci- 
pitated, its roaring noife, and the narrow making bridge, gave full 
occafion for the ufe of my eye, and the fteadinefs of my head. At 
Chinnanee, I was taxed in the fum of a rupee for penniffion to 
crols the river Chinnaun, which forms the weftern limit of this 

On the 21ft, at Dumomunjce — feven coffes. A few fcattered 
houfes, in one of which I was accommodated by a Kammirian fa- 
mily, who had taken a farm in that quarter. The approach to 
this village leads through a valley, covered with luxuriant herbage, 
and interfperfed with fome of the moil beautiful (hrubs I ever faw. 
From Jumbo hither, the road tended, as nearly as I could afcer- 
tain, to the eaft and eaft-by-fouth but from the vicinity of Du- 
momunjee it leads to the north and north-by-weft.« 


* My ferrant informed me that robberies are often committed in thefe parts, by the 
inhabitants of an adjacent diftrict > and to avoid which, travellers have been induced to 


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! On the 22d, at Naufman— -nine cdfies : a fmall village in the 
Kifhtewer country the only independant Hindoo territory I have 
yet leen in India. This day croflcd the Chinnaun, ufually deno- 
minated at this place, from the mode of eroding it, the Chickah. 
The manner of conveying paflengers and all forts of property over 
this ftream is curious, and defcrves explanation. The Chinnaun 
is about feventy or eighty yards broad, and, like the rivers of this 
part of India, from the declivity of the country, very rapid. On 
the oppofite banks are fixed ftrong wooden ports, of about four 
feet in height, on the upper ends of which a flout rope is tightly 
extended, and is joined below to a fmaller one, by hoops of twiftcd 
oners, — In the centre of the fmall rope, to which only the hoops 
are firmly attached, hangs a vehicle of net-work, for the convey- 
ance of merchandife and paflengers, which is fupported from the 
main rope by a wooden Aider, in the form and fize of a bullock's 
yoke, to whofe ends the vehicle is fattened $ and a fuflkicnt length 
of both ends of the fmall rope permits it to be landed on either 
fide of the river. It appears that the feat, or as it is termed in 
this county, the Chickah, is by mutual agreement kept on the 
Kifhtewer fide, during the night. In defiance of my pafsport, the 
officer at the Chinnanee limit, taxed me in an additional fee; and I 
was alfo compelled to buy my way through an inferior tribe of 

make a deviation from the more dirctf track. But I apprehend that the abrupt fteep- 
nefs of fome of the ranges of mountains in this quarter, has caufed this oblique 



harpies, who infefted the water fide. Anxious to arrive at the end 
of the ftage, being both hungry and tired, I endeavoured to pacify 
their clamours j but other demands were yet againft me : for this 
extraordinary race of ferrymen, having conveyed my fervant and 
our little baggage over half of the river, kept them fwinging there, 
and declared that they mould be detained until a fecond payment 
was made. Though this impediment materially affected me, I 
could not refift laughing at the aukward pofition of the unfortu- 
nate domeftic, who bawled out to me, from his flack rope, that 
they were a pack of hardened rogues, and that he would rather be 
kept hanging all night, than confent to give them a farthing more. 
But the neceflities of my fituation cooled my refcntment, and 
obliged me. to purchafe his releafe. 

At Naufman, I waited on a Mahometan of fome dilYin&ion, 
who was travelling into Kammire, and I requefted permiflion to 
travel in his fuite, that I might with more fuccefs, I informed 
him, repel the dreaded attack of the cuftom-houfe officers who, 
fince my departure from Jumbo, had extorted a larger fum than 
was proportioned to the ftate of my finances. At the diftance of 
every ten or twelve miles from Jumbo to the Chinnaun river, one 
of thefe petty tyrants takes his ft and j and on the payment of a fti- 
pulated fum to the government, colle&s the public duties, as well as 
enforces every fpecies of private exaction ; and fuch taxes have be- 
come the more grievous to the merchant, by their being equally 
levied on the tranfportation of goods through a diftrid, as at the 


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actual place of falc. From Kammire to Lucknow are not lefs than 
thirty (rations at which a duty of three and four per cent, is levied 
on every quality of merchandize : this charge, with the expences 
neceftarily incurred in the courfe of a tedious and diftant land-con- 
veyance, largely enhances the price of (hauls in the lower part of 
India. Zulphucar Khan, the perfon whom I had addrefled, rea- 
dily offered me affiftance, and admitted me, without referve, into 
his party. This Khan had lately ferved the chief of Jumbo, and 
had been employed in the management of a diftrict which that 
chief holds in Kafhraire. But on the charge of fome default the 
Mahometan was recalled ; and, after undergoing a rigorous con- 
finement, as well as fevere tortures, the effect of which had de- 
ftroyed his right hand, he was permitted to retire into Kafhmire, 
where his family now refides. 

On the 23d, we proceeded, fix cones, and halted on the fummit 
of a fteep and uninhabited mountain : the air, in itfelf bleak, was 
made painfully cold by the fall of a heavy rain, which did not 
ceafe during the night. It were almoft fuperfluous to fay, that the 
perfon who makes this journey fhould pouefs a ftrong and vigorous 
conftitution, and he (hould alfo endeavour to cordially wean himfelf 
from the dpfire of every luxury. 

On the 24th, at Hullweiggin, a village compofed of detached 
hamlets — five cofles. The journey of this day confuted wholly of 
clambering over hills, and I may add, rolling down them. The 
protection of the Khan was confpkuoufly manifeftcd at this cuf- 



tom-houfe, where I only paid one quarter of a rupee ; and being 
now confidered an cftablilhed member of his family, I was 

treated at our places of halt with much civility. AH the cuftom- 
houfes on the north fide of the Chinnaun, are in the hands of 
Kafhmitians, who have found in the Hindoo diftricts a fafe and 
profitable retreat from the oppreflions of their own government. 
The inhabitants of Kifhtcwer are Hindoos, though the chief is a 
Mahometan ; but we may fuppofe no very rigid one, for either 
he or his father, became a convert, to effect fome purpofe with 
the governor of Kafhmire. 

On the 25th, at Bannaul — feven cones. A fmall village, de- 
pendant on Kafhmire ; where we were accommodated in a mofque,* 
the common lodging of Mahometan travellers, in places not fup- 
plied with karavanferahs. Much hail and rain having fallen this 
day, the path, a winding and narrow one, became fo flippery, 
that our progrefs was very flow ; and my fhoes, which were pur- 
chafed at Jumbo, now evinced fo many wide marks of diffolu- 
tion, that I was obliged to tye them to my feet with cords. At 
the diftance of three codes to the fouth-eaft of the village of Ban- 
naul, we paired the boundary of a divifion of the Kaflimire ter- 
ritory, lying without the greater circle of mountains. The gover- 
nors of Kaflimire permit the fertile valley of Bannaul, of ten or 
twelve miles in length, to remain uncultivated, that it may not 

* It was foul], and built of wood. 
; • • afford 


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afford melter or provifion to the bordering Hindoo dates j who, in 
former periods, have, through this tra£t, approached the interior 
pafles of Kammire. 

On the 26th, at the town of Durroo, or Surroo, a ftation — 
feven cofles. The firft part of this road leads over a mountain, 
whofe afcent is computed, in a winding dire&ion, at fix miles. 
On the fummit, then covered with fnow, except where a ftream 
of water intervenes, arc feen the plains of Kafhmire, extending, in 
a long range, from the fouth-eaft to the north-weft, and exhibiting 
a beautiful diverfity of landfcape. The view, long a rare one to 
me, was highly grateful, and excited a train of pleafing ideas, 
which the fuccefsful progrefs of my journey contributed to heigh- 
ten, and which I continued to indulge, until the extreme chillricfs of 
the air compelled me to defcend into a warmer climate. 

Ha v img now brought you to a near view of this land of pleafure, 
I am urged, that the defcription may be more explanatory, to call 
back your attention to the country and people I have lately vifited. 
—From Lall Dong to the Ganges, the face of the country forms a 
clofe chain of woody mountains, and did not one or two mifcrable 
hamlets feebly interpofe, you would pronounce that divifion of Si- 
ringnaghur fitted only for the habitation of the beafts of the foreft. 
Elephants abound there, in numerous herds j but are not to be 
feen, it is faid, on the weft fide of the Jumna. In the vicinity of 
Nhan, the country is interfperfed with, low hills, and frequently 
opens into extenfive valtfe? i which having, perhaps, ever lain wafte, 

Vol. I. Qjq are 


are overgrown with low wood. From thence to Bellafpour, the 
fcene is changed into piles of lofty mountains, whofc narrow breaks 
barely ferve to difchaige the defcending ftreams. From Bellafpour, 
fertile vallies, though not wide, extend to Biflbuly, where the 
country is again covered with high hills, which, with little varia- 
tion, ftretch to the limits of Kaihmire. The boundaries of Kifli- 
tewer, except to the place of my entrance and departure, are not 
fpecified ; nor is the amount of the revenues ; an omillion cauicd 
by my inability to procure any fubftantial authority. The road 
from La!l Dong to Kaftimire, as accurately as could be afcertaincd, 
from an obfervation of the fun's courfe, tended generally to the 
north- weft, weft-north-weft, and weft by north j except where the 
deviation is otherwife noted. The fides of the inhabited mountains 
produce wheat, barley, and a variety of the fmall grains peculiar to 
India. The cultivated fpaccs project from the body of the hill, in 
feparate flats, in the form of a range of femicircular ftairs : with a. 
broad bafe and a narrow fummit. The ground, which is ftrong 
and productive, has been propelled, it fliould fcem, into thefe pro- 
jections by the action of the rains, which fall among thefe moun- 
tains with great violence, from June till October ; and is now pre- 
ferved in this divided and level ftate by buttrcftes of loofe ftones, 
which bind in the edge of every flat. Rice is alfo cultivated in the 
narrow vallies, but not in a great quantity ; nor is it the ufual food 
of the inhabitants, who chiefly lublift on wheat, bread, and peafe 
made into a thick foup. From Nhan, the northern fides of the 


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hais produce the fir,* in great plenty j and in the country between 
Jumbo and Kafhmire, are feen many pines, but I obfcrved they 
only grew on the north face of the mountains. I have frequently 
eat my meal under the {hade of a fpreading willow, which here, as 
in Europe, delights in hanging over a ftream. The climate is not 
favourable to fruits and vegetables, being too hot for the Perfiaw 
products, and not fufficiently warm to mature thofe of India : 
though the white mulberry muft be excepted, which, at Jumbo, 
is of a large fize, and of an exquifite flavour. The villages of the 
Mountaineers, or rather their hamlets, ftand generally on the brow 
of a hill, and confift of from four to fix or eight fioall fcattered 
houfes j which are butft Df rough ftones, laid in a clay loam, and 
ufually flat roofed : I have alfo feen, though not often, Hoping roofs 
of wood. The refinous parts of the fir, cut in flips, rupply the 
common ufes of the lamp', in all the places where that tree abounds } 
but the method of extra&mg its turpentine, of tar, does not feem 
to be known. The natives of thefe mountains are compofed of the 
<liiTerent claffes of Hindoos, and littleoHier difference of I manners 
exifts between them and tholc'of the- fouthem quarters of* India 
than is leen amongft a people who occupy the high and low lands 
of the fame country. The fcarcity of wealth, by depreffing the 
growth of luxury, has given them a rude fimplicity of character, 

j ' ' * 1 " # ** * i ■,*»•;.* * **, 

• That fpecics oFit called the ScoU fir. 

Qjq 2 and 


and has impeded the general advancement of civilization. They 
have no fpacious buildings for private or public ufe, nor in the pet*' 
formancc of religious offices do they obferve thofe minuter or re- 
fined ceremonies that are praclifed by the fouthern Hindoos. 

At Taullah Mhokee* a fmaU volcanic fire iffues from the fide 
of a mountain, on which the Hindoos have raifed a temple that has 
long been of celebrity and favorite relbrt among the people of the 
Punjab. Fire being the pur eft of the elements, the Hindoos con*, 
fider it, as did mod of die ancient Afiatic nations, the fitted em- 
blem to reprefcnt the Deity. All places which produce a fubteiv 
raoeous flame are held fccred by the Hindoos,, who do not permit 
any image to be placed near it j believing that other fymbols would 
tend to fully the purity of this reprefentation : and I have often no- 
ticed, that thofe Hindoos who are the moft converiant in the rites 
of their religion, never omitted, at the firit fight of fire in the 
courfe of the day, to offer up a prayer of adoration. The Moun- 
taineers invariably preferred the beard, and. inftead of bowing the 
head in faiutation, as in Lower India, they embrace the party ad- 
drefled, and incline the head over his left (houlder. The growth 
of the beard is encouraged, perhaps, from a certain ferocity of 
difpofition incident to their fituation, and generally predominant ia. 

• This word fjgnifies " The mouth of the flame." The place is firuate eipht or 
nine mile* to Uw northward oS Nadone, the principal town in the Kangrab country. 


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the difpofition of Mountaineers, which prompts them, in different 
modes, to fhew a difdain and contempt for the fofter manners of 
the natives of the low country..* 

Th e women have the olive complexion* are delicately fhaped, 
and evince a freedom in their manner, which, without a tendency 
to immodefty, or connected with the habits of licentioufhefs,. feeras 
the refult of the common confidence repofed in them by the men : 
I have feen a woman (top, though carrying a pot of water, and 
converfe unrefervedly with paflengers ; giving them an information 
of the road, or any other ordinary intelligence. Their drefs con- 
Ads of a petticoat, with a border, ufually of different colours j a 
clofe jacket, covering half of the waift, and a loofe ftomacher to 
the fore part of it, which reaches to the girdle. Their hair r which 
they hold in as high an eftimation as that beautiful appendage can 
be regarded by the gayeft females of Europe, is plaited with black 
filk, or cotton firings, and falls down the back j over which they 
throw, in a graceful fafliion, a veil, which feldom touches, and ne- 
ver wholly conceals, the face. The women of the principal peo- 

* A fwelling of the exterior part of the throat, which is afcribed to the noxiou* 
quality of the water, prevails among the Mountaineers. As the lame complaint, pro- 
ceeding, probably, from the like caufe, is incident to certain inhabitants of the Alps 
and otlier mountainous countries in Europe, the origin of it has, doubtlcfs, been fcien- 
tificaily investigated and explained. I will, therefore, only obferve, that the water 
Uliiing from thefe mountains i* impregnated, from the large mixture of fnow, with a 
crude and cold quality j and may have acquired its alledged pernicious property from 
bein? confined in channels, which the (hade of the woods and the heieht of the hills 
preclude from a free circulation of air and the rays of the fun. 



pie, in the manner of the Mahometans, are kept in private apart- 
ments : this practice, exifting in a country * where little danger is 
apprehended from foreign intrufion, affords a belief, that the con- 
cealment of the higher ranks of women has been an eftablifhed 
cuftom of the Hindoos, previoufly to the date of the Mahometan 
conqueft of India. It was once my opinion, that the Hindoos had 
fecluded them from the public view that they might not be expofed 
to the intemperance of the Mahometan conquerors ; but after per- 
ceiving the ufage adopted amongft the fequeftered Mountaineers, 
and alfo amongft the various independent Mahratta ftates, I am in- 
duced to think that the exclufion of women from fociety, prevailed 
in India before the period of the Afghan or Tartar invafions. At 
the fame time, were a conclufion to be drawn from certain cuftoms 
of the Hindoos, now obfeletc, but noticed in their hiftory, I would 
fay, that they did not, in more ancient times, confine any clafs of 
their women ; but, as their manners, from the influx of wealth, 
and confequent luxury, became lefs (imple, that the princes and 
nobles of the country produced the innovation from a defire of 
imprefling the populace with a greater refpe£t for their families. 
The ftory of the incarnations of Vyftnow, and other ancient le- 
gends, (hews that the Hindoo women were admitted into the af- 
fcmbly of men, and often poflefled an extenfive fway. In the hif- 
tory of their celebrated Ram, who appears to have been a powerful 


• Mountainous and difficult of accefs to a hofltlc nation. 



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foldier, is fcen a paffage which ferves to illuftrate this portion, and 
to trace alfo, to a high fource, a mode of tryal formerly eftablifhed 
in Europe. 

It is neceflary to inform you, that Sree Mun Narrain, the Su- 
preme Deity of the Hindoos, together with his indivifible aflbci- 
ates, Mhah Letchimy, and the Snake, for the purpofe of correcting 
certain evils which had at that time deranged our terreftrial world, 
fuund it expedient to perfonify human creatures : Narrain aflumed 
the form of Ram, a renowned foldier j Letchimy became his wife, 
under the name of Seetah Devee ; and the Snake was transformed 
into the body of Letchimun, the brother and companion of Ram. 
It is feen that thefe perfonages mixed freely in the focieties of the 
world, nor does any part of the hiftory notice the retirement of 
Seetah ; ftie is, indeed, reprefented coming forth on every occafion 
which could, with propriety, permit the interference of her fex. 
A fervice of importance calling upon Ram's individual exertion, he 
configncd Seetah to the charge of Letchimun : the lady and her 
guardian remained fome time in fecurity and quiet ; when a famed 
magician, inftigated no doubt, by the devil, who is ever on the 
watch to draw aftray mortals, particularly the female divifion of 
them, came that way, faw Seetah, and became violently enamoured. 
This fubtle man, having difcovered, it is fuppofed by his fpells and 
incantations, that the eyes of women are the fooncft enfnared, let 
fly, full in the fight of Seetah, a bird of brilliant and beautiful 
plumage. This artifice had the moft powerful effect} for the de- 

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ludcd fair one inftantly conjured Letchiraun, by every pledge lie 
held dear, by the affection he bore to her, by his fricndftiip for 
Ram, to procure for her the charming bird. Lctchimun, amazed 
and much troubled at this entreaty, endeavoured to defcribe the 
eminent danger of quitting her in fo perilous a fituation, his dread : 
of Ram's difpleafure for the defertion of fo grand a truft : in (hort, 
he urged every argument which a regard for his own character or 
her fafety could fuggeft. The dazzling hues of the bird had fo 
amply filled the mind of Seetah, that no fpace remainedfor the 
counfel of Letchimun ; Die rauft poflefs this charming object of 
her wifhes, or become the mod miferable of women. On the re- 
peated denial of Letchimun to gratify fo dangerous a requeft, blinded 
by the difappointment of her hopes, and impelled by a paroxyfm of 
rage, (he accufed him of the defign of (eduction, which flie al- 
ledged to be the reafon of his refufal to leave her. Letchimun, now 
convinced of the inefficacy of argument, and the neccfiity of ac- 
quiefcence, went in queft of the bird j but previoufly to his depar- 
ture he drew a magic circle around the fpot where Seetah flood, 
and told her., that within that fpace no calamity could enter. Let- 
chimun had no foonergone, than the plotting necromancer, aflTum- 
ing the appearance of an old man, approached, with a feeble and 
decrepid ftep, the place where Seetah flood, and, through an ap- 
parent excefs of weaknefs, extended himfelf on the ground. He 
befought her, in a piteous tone of voice, for a little water to allay 
his thirft, and reftore his exhaufted ftrength. The humane, but 


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ill -fated, Scctah, felt the force of the old man's prayer, and, with 
a bofom overflowing with benevolence, (he ftepped, unmindful of 
her fafety, beyond the prefcribed bounds, and fell that inftant into 
the power of her betrayer. Here the ftory wanders into a wilder 
field of fable ; where I mould reap little credit, or you improve- 
ment. I will, therefore, content myfelf with mentioning, that 
after Ram had recovered Seetah, he ordered, for the removal of 
certain fufpicions which had crept into his own bread, and for ef- 
fectually {hutting the mouth of (lander, which began to open, that 
flie mould be judged by the ordeal trial. Seetah, eager to bantih 
every doubt from the mind of her lord, and to exhibit to the 
world a public teft of her purity, joyfully heard the mandate > and, 
without mew of dread, walked over the burning iron. But the 
feet of Seetah, fays the ftory, " being (hod with innocence, the 
" Iborching heat was to her a bed of flowers." 

Pardon me for the intrufion of this Eaftern tale, which might 
juftly be deemed a trifling one, did it not indicate that the women 
of rank, among the more ancient Hindoos, were not excluded from 
the public eye, and that this people were acquainted with the trial 
by fire at an early period of time. The fame ufes may be derived 
from this ftory as are contained in the Arabian Nights 5 where, 
amidft the olio of.taliiman, genii, and devils, we are enabled to 
extract: juft relations of the manners and difpofitions of the people. 

As I have thus far entered on a fubjeel which has occafionally 
engaged my attention, I will proceed a little farther, and recite a 

Vol. I. R r circum- 

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circumftance which may corroborate the pofition, that Hindoo 
women of diftinftion, by ancient as well as exifting ufage, were 
not debarred the fight of men. When a female of the chittery, or 
royal race, was marriageable, or fuppofed to poflefs a difcrimi- 
nating choice, fhe was conduced to an apartment where many 
youths of her own tribe were aflembled ; and, being defired to felecl: 
from them her future hufband, fhe diftinguiflied the objeft of her 
partiality by throwing over his neck a wreath of flowers.* 

These dcfultory opinions are freely given, and I am to in treat 
you will as freely review them j receiving fuch as may ftand on 
principles of reafon, and rejecting, without a fcruple, thofe that 
feem vague or fanciful. 

I am, 

Dear Sir, 

Your's, &c. 

• ThU cuftom, I am informed, has been obfcrved within thefe late yean at Tanjore. 



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THL Nl .V , oHK 


T.L^t s f iNi..»T 

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Ke/bmire, 1783. 


I T is now neceflary to call your attention, 
already burthened, I fear, with no very pleafant matter, to the 
fubjecl of Kaftimire, and endeavour to defcribc the natural beau- 
ties of a valley, which perhaps, ftands unparalleled for its air, 
foil, and a piclurefque variety of landfcape. 

The northern path of the Bannaul hill, mentioned in my lafl 
letter, is about one mile and a half fhorter, than that of the 
fouthern fide, not that this difference arifes from the level of the 
low lands of Bannaul and Kalhmire, but from the greater dc- 
Vol. II. A clivity 

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clivity of the fouthern face of the hill. Yet it is evident, from 
the precipitated current of the rivers of this quarter of India, that 

the valley of Kafhmirc is confiderably more elevated than the 
Punjab plains. This height of fituation, furrounded alfo by 


mountains, whofc lofty fummits are covered with {how, during a 
gr eat part of the year, imparts a eoldnefs to the air of Kafhmire, 
which its immediate line o c latitude would not other wife poflefs. 

Veere Naug was the firft village we halted at, within the 
valley, where our party was flriclly examined, but from the refpecT: 
(hewn by all clafTes of people to Zulphucar Khan, we were permit- 
ted to pafs untaxed and unmokfted. A rare ufagcata Kafhmirian 
cuftom-houfe ! It fliould have been before noticed, that our 
patron, from the lamenefs of his hand and a general infirm 
ftate of body, was obliged to travel in a litter ; a fpecies of 
carriage different from any feen in the fouthern quarters of 
India. The frame of four flight pieces of wood, is about four 
feet and a half long, and three in breadth, with a bottom of cot- 
ton lacing or fplit canes interwoven. Two ftout bamboo poles, 
project three feet, from the end of the frame and are fattened to its 
outward fides, by iron rings. The extremities of thefe bamboos 
arc loofcly connected by folds of cords, into which is fixed, by 
clofely twining and binding at the centre, a thick pole, three feet 
long ; and by thefe central poles, the litter, or as it is here called, 
the Sampan, is fupported on the moulders of four men. This 
conveyance you will fee affords no Ihelter againft any inclemency 


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of weather, which is braved at all feafons by thefe men of the moun- 

In the paflage of fome of the fteep lulls the Khan was 
obliged to walk, and it feemed to me furprifing, that the bearers 
were able to carry the litter over them. The Kafhmirians, who 
are the ordinary travellers of this road, ufe fandals made of draw 
rope, as an approved defence of their feet, and to fave their fhoes. 
On leaving Sumboo, I had betn advifed to adopt this practice, 
but, my feet not being proof againft the rough collifion of the 
ftraw, I foon became lame and threw off my fandals. From a 
glaring deficiency of method, in the arrangement of my remarks, 
I am often fearful that but faint traces of a general chain will be 
exhibited. It is not that my ideas flow fo thick and ftrong, as, in 
confidence of their fuperiour excellency, to contemn reftriclion or 
that obedience to order, which is fo eflential to their utility ; it is 
an habit, perhaps an idle one, that impels me to note at the mo- 
ment, the train of thoughts which occur j and it becomes ne- 
cefTary I fee to plead this excufe, for having fo abruptly dragged in 
the ftory of the khan's litter and my ftraw flioes, when I fliould 
have been laying before you iketches of this beautiful country, 
which, in the language of Perfia, is called Kachmire be Nazeer.* 

In the vicinity of Vecre Naug is fecn a torrent of water burfting 
from the fide of a mountain with impetuous force, and imme- 

• Unequalled. 
A 2 



diately forming a confiderable ftream, * which contributes, with 
numerous other rivulets, to fertilize the valley of Kaftunire. On 
the fpot, where this piece of water reaches the plain, a bafon of a 
fquarc form has been conftructed, it is faid, by the emperor Je- 
hanguir, for receiving and difcharging the current •, and the trees 
of various kinds, which overfpread the borders of the bafon, at 
once give an ornament to the fcene, and a giateful fhade to the 
inhabitants of that quarter, who, in the fummer feafon, make it 
a place of common refort. 

The road from Veere Naug leads through a country, exhi- 
biting that ftore of luxuriant imagery, which is produced by a 
happy difpofition of hill, dale, wood and water ; and, that thefe 
wre excellencies of nature might be difplayed in their full glory, 
it was the feafon of fpring, when the trees, the apple, pear, 
the peach, apricot, the cherry and mulberry bore a variegated 
load of blofTom. The clufters alfo, of the red and white rofe, 
with an infinite clafs of flowering fhrubs, prefented a view fo 
gayly decked, tbat no extraordinary warmth of imagination, was 
required to fancy that I flood, at leaft, on a province of fairy- 
land. Except the mulberry, I do not believe that this country 
produces any fpecies of the fruits of India, and but few of its 
vegetables j fuch is the change effe&ed within a fpace of two 
degrees of latitude : this fudden revolution of climate cannot be 

• It is called Vbeit or Bchat in the Kaflraurian language, and in the Sanfcrir, Vctuftah. 


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afcribed to the northern fituation of Kafhmire, which is little 
more than two hundred miles from Lahore, where, many of the 
fruits of fouthern India come to maturity, but to the furrounding 
fnowy mountains, and an highly elevated land ; which the Hindoos 
fay, though very widely, is three perpendicular miles higher than 
the Punjab. 

On the 26th of April, at Durroo or Lurroo, a fmalt but 
very populous town, feven coflfes from Bannaul, where our khan 
and his fuite were hofpitably received by the chief, and lodged that 
night at his houfe. Our entertainment, and the cordial behaviour 
of the hoft, made us a general recompence for the fatigues of the 
journey j and I in an inftant, forgot the pains of my bruifed feet, 
in the pleafant comparifon between a commodious fhelter and the 
boifterous weather of the mountains. 

On the 27th, at Iflaamabad, five cofles — a large town, fituate 
on the north fide of the river Jalum, which is here fpringing from 
the mountains, or penetrating them in narrow openings. At this 
place the Jalum, over which a wooden bridge is built, is about eighty 
yards acrofs, and from the level furface of the country has a gentle 
current. Our party, this evening, hired a boat to proceed to the 
city, and had gone more than five miles, when a written order ar- 
rived, in an evil hour, .requiring us to return and remain at Ifla- 
amabad, until a paffport (hould be obtained from the court. This 
check infufed a general gloom, and rendered our fituation, already 
confined and irkfome, almoft comfortlefs. The boat, a very fmall 


one, was fcantily covered with a {lender mat, and the wind, current, 
and a heavy rain had fet in againft us. The rain continued incef- 
fantly the whole night, and though my bedding was drenched with 
water, I received no injury from having lain on it feverai hours. 
After exprefiing my grateful acknowledgements to a hale conftitu- 
tion, I am induced to afcribe a great fhare of the prevention of 
ficknefs, on this as on other occafions to the frequent ufe of to- 
bacco, which manifeftly pofleilcs the property of defending the 
body againft the impreflion of damps and cold or impure air, 
which, from the thick ranges of wood and hills, is tainted with 
noxious vapours, produces fevers of a malignant kind, and I am 
prompted to attribute the good health I enjoyed in thole parts, to 
the common habit of fmoking tobacco. 

Our party was greatly furprized at the receipt of this very un- 
, feafonable mandate, as we had during the day, occupied one of 
the moft public places of the town, where moft of the principal 
people vifitcd Zulphucar Khan, fupplied him with proviiions, and 
were apprized of his intention to depart in the evening. But it 
had been iflued I believe by the governor of the town, in refentment 
of the khan's not vifiting him ; and operated with a quick force, 
on the minds of all the men, and even the children of Iflaamabad, 
who, but the ftiort day before, from treating us with a ftudied kind- 
nefs, would now pafs our quarters without a notice. In every region 
of the earth, the lofs of power, nay the trivial crofles of life, too 
often caufe the defcrtion of thofe, whom the language of the world 


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has entitled friends, but the averted looks of the prince are ever 
faithfully copied by the courtiers. The dilgraced courtier of Afia, 
or he againit whom the frown of the defpot ihall be pointed, be- 
comes immediatly infected, and all men, by intuitive knowledge, it 
fliould fcem, (hun him. A retreat is rarely made by an Afiatic 
fratelman, who ufually doles his political career in a dungeon or 
on a fcaffold. 

In Afia, the principles of juftice, honor or patriotifm, as 
they confer no lubftantial benefit, nor tend to elevate the cha- 
racter, are feldom feen to actuate the mind of the fubjecT, who 
is coniritutionally led to fix the tenure of life and property, 
and fame, on the will of his prince. Zulphucar Khan informs 
me, that the chief of Kalhmire, though a youth, (lands in the 
foremoft rank of tyrants, and that the exactions of a Hindoo cuf- 
tom-houfe will be foon forgotten in the oppredion of his govern- 
ment. The one, he faid, afFe&s a trifling portion of property, 
the other involves fortun and life. 

Two or three days after our arrival at Iflaamabad, the Dcwan, 
or principal officer of the governor of Kafhmire encamped in our 
vicinity, and being acqu nted with Zulphucar Khan, obtained 
permiflion for the procedure of our party to the city. It is here 
necefiary to obferve, that no perfon, excepr by ftealth, can enter or 
depart from Kalhmire without an order, marked with the feal of 
government. The Dewan, attracted I fuppofe by the appearance of 
fo white a perfon, made fome enquiry into the nature of my occu- 


pation and views. I told the old ftory of a turk travelling towards 
his country, with the addition, that to avoid the Sicque territory, 
I had taken the route of Kaflimire, where I hoped to experience the 
benefit of his protection. My ftory was favourably heard, and I 
received a very cordial aflurance of every neceffary afliftancc. Our 
party being dire&ed to attend the Dewan, and to form a part of 
his domeftic fuitc, we preceded by water, on the afternoon of 
the 3d of May, to Bhyteepour, nine cofles, a village fituate on 
the northern bank of the Jalum, the evening was fercne, and 
the variegated view of populous villages, interfperfed through 
a plain which was waving with a rich harveft, and enlivened 
by the notes of a thoufand birds, filled the mind with harmony 
and delight. 

In the vicinity of Bhyteepour are feen the remains of an Hindoo 
temple, which, though impaired by the ravages of time, and more 
by the deftru&ive hand of the Mahometans, ftill bore evident marks 
of a fuperior tafte and fculpture. Kafhmire, having fallen a con- 
queft to the followers of Mahomet, at an early period of their 
empire in India, when they furioufly broke down every fence 
that barred the progrefs of their religion, felt the full force of 
a barbarous zeal ; and its monuments of worfliip and tafte were 
thrown to the ground in fliapelefs piles of ruin. 

The Dewan taking Zulphucar Khan with him, went, on the 
5th of the month into the interior part of the country, and directed 
me to wait for him at the town of Pamper, ten miles further down 


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the river, where an order was fent for my accommodation. This 
perfon of the Hindoo fec>, poffefied a more liberal difpofition 
than is ufually found in an Indian : though perhaps I am fo 
much biafled by his indulgent treatment, that my opinion may 
be thought partial, but his deportment feemed uniformly bene- 
volent to all clafles of people ; with bis companions he was af- 
fable and good humoured, he was humane to his domeftics, and 
he exercifed with a reafonable temperance the duties of his 

On the 7th, the Dewan came to Pamper, whence I went 
to the city, a diftance of feven cones in his boat, which, though in 
Kaftimire was thought magnificent, would not have been difgraced 
in the ftation of a kitchen tender to a Bengal badgero. The 
boats of Kaflimire are long and narrow, and are rowed with 
paddles : from the ftern, which is a little elevated, to the centre, 
a tilt of mats is extended for the ftielter of paflengers or mer- 
chandize. The country being interfered with numerous ftrcams, 
navigable for fmall vefleis, great advantage and conveniency would 
arife to it from the water conveyance, elpecially in its interior 
commerce, did not the mifcrable policy of the Afghan govern- 
ment crufli the fpirit of the people. 

The city, which in the ancient annals of India was known 
by the name of Siringnaghur, but now by that of the province 
at large, extends about three miles on each fide of the river 
Jalum, over which are four or five wooden bridges, and occupies 
Vol. .II. B in 


in fome part of its breadth, which is irregular, about two miles. 
The houfes, many of them two and three ftories high, are flightly 
built of brick and mortar, with a large intermixture of timber. 
On a ftanding roof of wood is laid a covering of fine earth, 
which flickers the building from the great quantity of mow 
that falls in the winter feafon. This fence communicates an 
equal warmth in winter, as a refreming coolnefs in the fum- 
mer feafon, when the tops of the houfes, which are planted 
with a variety of flowers, exhibit at a diftance the fpacious view 
of a beautifully checquered parterre. The ftreets are narrow, and 
choaked with the filth of the inhabitants, who are proverbially 
unclean. No buildings are feen in this city worthy of remark j 
though the Kaflimirians boaft much of a wooden mofque, called 
the Jumah Muffid * creeled by one of the emperors of Hin- 
doftan j but its claim to diftinction is very moderate. 

The fubahdar, or governor of Kammire, refides in a fortrefs 
called Shcre Ghur, occupying the fouth-eaft quarter of the city, 
where mod of his officers and troops arc alfo quartered. 

The benefits which this city enjoys of a mild falubrious air, a 
river flowing through its centre, of many large and commodious 
houfes, are effentially alloyed by its confined conftruclion and the 
extreme filthinefs of the people. The covered floating baths, 

• Jumah is the fabath of the Mahometans, and Muffid the name of a public place 
of worfhip. In prc-cnuace, the principal place of prayer in Mahometan cities is termed 
Jumah Muifid. 


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which are ranged along the fides of the river, give the only ufti- 
mony of conveniency or order j fuch baths are much warned by 
the Indian Mahometans, who from the climate and their religion, 
are obbged to make frequent ablutions, and, in preventing the 
expofure of their women on thefe occafions, to adopt laborious 

The lake of Kalhmire, or in the provincial language, the 
Dall, long celebrated for its beauties, and the pleafure it affords 
to the inhabitants of this country, extends from the north-eaft 
quarter of the city, in an oval circumference of five or fix miles, 
and joins the Jalum by a narrow channel, near the fuburbs. On 
the entrance to the eaftward is feen a detached hill, on which 
fome devout Mahometan has dedicated a temple to the great 
king Solomon, whofe memory in Kammire is held in profound 

The legends of the country aflert, that Solomon vifited this 
valley, and finding it covered, except the eminence now men- 
tioned with a noxious water, which had no outlet, he opened a 
paflage in the mountains, and gave to Kafhmire its beautiful 
plains. The Tucht Suliman, the name beftowed by the Maho- 
metans on the hill, forms one fide of a grand portal to the lake, 
and on the other ftands a lower hill, which, in the Hinduee is called 
Hirney Purvet, or the green hill, a name probably adopted from its 
being covered with gardens and orchards. 

On the fummit of the Hirney Purvet, the Kaflimirians have 

B 2 ereaed 


erected a raofque to the honor of a Muckdoom Saheb, who is as fa- 
mous in their tales, as Thorn as-a-Becket in thofe of Canterbury. 
The men never undertake a bufmefs of moment without confulting 
Muckdoom Saheb j and when a Kartimirian woman wants a hand- 
fome hulband or a chopping boy, flic addreues her prayer to the 
minifteis of this faint, who are faid to feldom fail in gratifying her 
wifh. The northern view of the Mike is terminated at the diftance 
of twelve miles, by a detached range of mountains, which Hope 
from the centre to each angle ; and from the bafe, a fpacious 
plain, preferved in conftant verdure by numerous ftreams, extends 
with an eafy declivity to the margin of the water. 

In the centre of the plain, as it approaches the lake, one of 
the Dehli emperors, I believe Shah Jehan, conftru&ed a fpacious 
garden, called the Shalimar, which is abundantly ftored with fruit- 
trees and flowering flirubs. Some of the rivulets which interfecfc 
the plain, are led into a canat at the back of the garden, and flow- 
ing through its centre, or occafionally thrown into a variety of 
water- works, compofe the chief beauty of the Shalimar. To 
decorate this rpot, the Mogul princes of India have difplayed 
an equal magnificence and tafte ; efpecially Jehan Gheer, who* 
with the enchanting Noor Mahl, made Kafhmire his ufual refiw 
dence during the fummer months, and largely contributed to 
improve its natural advantages. On arches thrown over the 
canal, are ere&ed at equal diftances, four or five fuites of apart- 
ments, each confuting of a faloon,,. with, four rooms at the angles,. 


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wliere the followers of the court attend, and the fervants prepare 
(herbets, coffee, and the Hookah. The frame of the doors of the 
principal faloon, is compofed of pieces of a ftone of a black co- 
lour, ftreaked with yellow lines, and of a clofer grain and higher 
poliih than porphiry. They were taken, it is faid, from an Hin- 
doo temple, by one of the Mogul princes, and efteemtd of great 

The canal of the Shalimar is conftrucled of mafonry as far as 
the lower pavillion, from whence the ftream is conveyed through 
a bed of earth, in the centre of an avenue of fpreading trees, to 
the lake, which, with other ih earns of a Idler note, it fupplies and 
rcfreflies. The other fides of the lake are occupied by gardens of 
an inferior defcription j though two of them, the property of the 
government, deferve a diftinft notice for their fize and pleafant 
appearance ; the Baugh Nufieem lying on the north-weft, and the 
Baugh Nilhat on the fouth-eaft quarter of the Shalimar. The 
numerous fmall iflands emerging from the lake, have alfo a happy 
effect in ornamenting the fcene. One of a fquare form is called 
the Char China ur, * from having at each of the angles a plane- 
tree ; but one of them, and a pavillion that was creeled in the 
centre, has gone to decay, as have all their monuments of the 
Moguls, except the Shalimar, which is preferved in good order, 
and is often vifited by the governor, whom 1 have feen there, with 

• The oriental plane* , 


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Bis officers and the principal inhabitants of the city. Since tie 
dimiemberment of Kaflimirc fium the m f >»re of Hindoftan, it h - 
b<#n fubject to the Afghans,* who p^ifcffmg norther the gemu- 
hor liberality of the Moguls, have fuiF-red its elegant ftrtK^ares to 
crumble into ruins, and to hold out againft them a fevere tefti- 
mony of the barbarity of their nation. 

Amir Khan, a Per fian, one of the lite governors of Kaflv- 
, mire, erected a fortified palace on the e n.lem fide of the lake ; but 
' the materials have been fo unfubftantial, that thoueh of not more 
than eight years ftanding, it cannot now with farety be inhabi* d. 
He ufed to pafs much of his time in this retreat* which was r 1- 
rioufly adapted to the enjoyment of the various fpecies of Aiiu:ic 
luxury ; and he is (till fpoken of in terms of affection and regret ; 
for, like them, he was gay, voluptuous, and much addicted to 
the pleafures of the table. There is not a boatman or his wife 
that does not fpeak of this Khan with rapture, and afcribe to 
him a once abundant livelihood. This governor like many of 
his predeceffors, trufting in the natural fh*ngth of the province, 
and its diftance from the capital, rebelled againft his mafter.f 
The force fent againft him Was fmall and ill appointed, and 
might have been eafily repelled by a few refolute men ftationed 

in the pafles. But in the hour of need, he was abandoned by 

■ i 

: • . 

• This event probably happened about the year 1754. 
t T »»nur Shah, the reigning emperor of the Afghans. 


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the pufillanimous fickle Kafbmirians, who reconciled their con- 
duct to the Perfian, by urging, that if he had remained in 
Kafhmire, he would have converted them all to the faith of All . 
and cut them off from the hope of falvation. A Kalhmirian muft 
have been grievoufly embarrafled to juftify Jus conduct, when he 
afcribed it to any principle of religion; for he is a Hindoo, 
a Mahometan, and would become a pariftian if a prieft were at 
huoaV according to the fafl^ipn or intereft of the day. 

Ths environs of the town, to the eaft and weft, are laid 
put in private gardens, which, fkirting the banks of the Jalum, 
or fupplied with canals from the lake, afford a various retreat 
of pleafure to the inhabitants. The plane-tree, that fpecies 
termed the Platanus Orientalis, is commonly cultivated in Kafti- 
mire, where it is faid to arrive at a greater perfection than in 
other countries. This tree, which in moft parts of Afia is 
called the Chinaur, grows Jo the fize of an oak, and has a 
taper ftreight trunk, with a filver coloured bark ; and its leaf, 
not unlike an expanded hand, is of a pale green. When in 
full foliage, it lias a grand and beautiful appearance, and in 
the hot weather, it affords , a refreftijng (hade. But I may ven- 
ture to clafs in the firft rank of vegetable produce, the rofe of 
Kafhmire, which, for its brilliancy and delicate $f odour, has 
long been proverbial in the ealt ; and its eflential oil or ottar 
is held in univerfal eftimation. The feafon, when the rofe 
firft opens into bloflbm, is celebrated with much fcftivity by 



the Kafhmirians, who refort in crowds to the adjacent gardens, 
and enter into fcenes of gaiety and pleafuie, rarely known among 
other Afiatic nations. There, all that exterior gravity which 
conftitutes a grand part of the Mahometan charafter, is thrown 
afide } and the Turk, Arab, and Perfian, as if fatigued with ex- 
hibiting the ferious and guarded deportment of their own 
country, give a licentious fcope to their palfions. 

The valley of Kafhmire is of an elliptick form, and ex- 
tends about ninety miles in a winding direction from the fouth- 
caft to the north-weft. It widens gradually to Iflaamabad, where 
the breadth is about forty miles, which is continued with little va- 
riation to the town of Sampre,* whence the mountains by a regular 
inclination to the weftward, come to a point, and divide Kafhmire 
from the territory of Muzzufferabad. To the north and north- 
call, Kaftimire is bounded by what is here termed the mountains 
of Thibet ; a branch, I apprehend, of that immenfe range, which 
rifing near the black fea, penetrates through Armenia, and fkirt- 
ing the fouth more of the Cafpian, extends through the north-eaft 
provinces of Perfia, to Thibet and China. On the fouth-eaft and 
fouth, it is bounded by Kifhtewar, and on the fouth-weft and 
weft, by Prounce,f Muzzufferabad and fome other independent 

• About twenty-five miles to the weftward of the city. 

f Through this diftri& lies the pals of Bcmber, minutely defcribed by Bernie*. 


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The Jalum, the weftcrn of the Punjab river?, having received 
the numerous rivulets of the valley, and the overflowing water of 
the lakes, becomes a fpacious ft ream, and is difcharged through 
the mountains near the town of Baramoulah, where its current, 
from the declivity of the land, runs with rapid force.* At Bara- 
moulah the Kafhmirians fay Solomon rent the mountains, and 
gave a paflage to the waters, which, from the beginning of time 
had floated on their plains. 

About eight miles to the weftward of the city, the Jalum is 
joined by a fmall river called the Chote, or little Scind, which I 
was informed by a Kafhmirian Pundit, arifes in the Thibet 
mountains, and is the only dream not produced within the valley. 
Previoufly to the Mahometan conqucft of India, Kafhmire was ce- 
lebrated for the learning of its Bramins and the magnificent con- 
ftruclion of its temple. The period of its fubjeclion to the Ma- 
hometans, is not recorded in any hiftory that I have fcen, but we 
may believe, that a country, containing a valuable commerce and 
a profufion of natural beauties, would at an early date have at- 
tracted their notice and invited their conqucft. It was governed in 
a long feries of fucceflion, by a race of Tartar princes, of the 
Chug or Chugatay tribe, until the year 1 586, when Acbar fub- 
dued it : aided more, it is faid, by intrigue, than the force of his 
arms. Kafhtnire remained annexed to the houfc of Timur for 

Vol. II. 

• Sec Beruicr. 



the fpace of one hundred and fixty years, after which it was be- 
trayed by the Mogul governor, to Ahmed Shah Duranny, who 
formed it into a province of the Afghan empire. 

The valley of Kafhmire has generally aflat fnrface, and being 
copioufly watered, yields abundant crops of rice, which is the 
common food of the inhabitants. At the bate of the fiirrounding 
hills, where the land is higher, wheat, barley and various other 
grains arc cultivated. A fuperior fpecies of faffron is alfo produced 
in this province, and iron of an excellent quality is found in the 
adjacent mountains. But the wealth and fame of Kafhmire have 
largely arifen from the manufacture of fhauls, which it holds un- 
rivalled, and ahnoft without participation. The wool of the 
{haul is not produced in the country, but brought from diftri&i 
of Thibet, lying at the diftance of a month's journey to the north- 
eaft. It is originally of a dark grey colour, and is bleached in 
Kafhmire by the help of a certain preparation of rice flour. The 
yarn of this wool is ftained with fuch colours as may be judged 
the heft fiuted for fale, and after being woven the piece is once 
wafhed. The border, which ufually difplays a variety of figure! 
and colours is attached to the (hauls, after fabrication ; but in fa 
nice a manner, that the junction is not difccrnable. The texture 
of the ftiaul refembles that of the flialoon of Europe, to which it 
has probably communicated the name. The price, at the loom, 
of an ordinary (haul, is eight rupees, thence in proportional qua- 
lity, it produces from fifteen to twenty j and I have fcen a very 


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fine piece fold at forty rupees the firft coft. But the value of this 
commodity may be largely enhanced by the introduction of flow- 
ered work ; and when you are informed that the fum of one 
hundred rupees is occafionally given for a (haul to the weaver, the 
half amount may be fairly afcribed to the ornaments. 

A portion of the revenue of Kafhmire is tranfmitted to the 
Afghan capital in fliaul goods, which I had an opportunity of 
feeine nreviouflv to the difpatch, and from the information then 
received, I am reafonably confirmed in the accuracy of this ftate- 
ment I have given. The fliaul 5 ufually confift of three fizes, two 
of winch, the long and the fmall fquare one, are in common ufc 
jut India ; the other long and very narrow, with a large mixture 
of black colour in it, is worn as a girdle by the northern 

A win* is made jn, Kafhmire, refcmbling that of Madeira, 
which, if (kilfully manufactured by age, would poffefs an excellent 
quality. A fpirituous liquor is alio diftilled from the grape, in 
which and the wine, the people of all kinds freely indulge. 

The Kafhrnirians fabricate the beft writing paper of the eaft, 
which was formerly an article of extenfive traffic } as were its lac- 
quer ware, cutlery and fugars ;* and the quality of thefe manufac- 
tures clearly evince, that were the inhabitants governed by wife 
and liberal princes, there are few attainments of art which they 

* The raw fagar is imported from the Punjab. 

C 2 would 


would not acquire. But the heavy oppreflions of the government, 
and the rapacious temper of the bordering dates, who exercife an 
unremitting rapacity on the foreign traders, and often plunder 
whole cargoes, have reduced the commerce of Kafhmire to a de- 
clining and languid ftate. In proof of this pofition, the Kalh- 
mirians fay, that during their fubjeclion to the Mogul dominion, 
the province contained forty thoufand (haul looms, and that at 
this day, there are not fixteen thoufand. In Ka/hmire are feen 
merchants and commercial agents of moft of the principal cities of 
northern India, alfo of Tartary, Perfia and Turkey, who at the 
fame time advance their fortunes, and enjoy the pleafures of a fine 
climate and a country, over which are profufely fpread the various 
beauties of nature. 

The drefs of the Kafhmirians confifts of a large turban, aufc- 
wardly put on ; a great woollen veft with wide fleeves } and a feck, 
wrapped in many folds round the middle under the veft, which 
may be properly called a wrapper, the higher clafs of people 
wear a pirahun or fhirt, and drawers ? but the lower order 
have no under garment, nor do they even gird up their loins. 
On firfl: feeing thefe people in their own country, I imagined 
from their garb> the caft of countenance, which is long and of 
a grave afpeft, and the form of their beards, that I had come 
amongft a nation of Jews. The fame idea impreiTed alfo Mr. 
Bernier, who carrying it further, has attempted, by the aid of 
fome proofs more fpecious than fubftantial, to deduce their 


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origin from the Jewifh tribes that were carried into cap- 

The drefs of the women is no Iefs aukward than that of the 
men, and is ill adapted to difplay the beauties they naturally pof- 
fefs. Their outward, and often only garment is of cotton, and 
fhaped like a k>ng loofe fhirt. Over the hair, which falls in a fingle 
braid, they wear a dofe cap, ufually of a woollen cloth of a crim- 
ibn colour ; and to the hinder part of it is attached a triangular 
piece of the fame fluff, which falling on the back conceals much 
of the hair. Around the lower edge of the cap is rolled a fmall 
turban, fattened behind with a fliort knot, which feemed to me the 
only artificial ornament about them. You will be pleafed to notice, 
that I fpeak of the drefs of the ordinary women, fuch only being 
permitted to appear in public. The women of the higher dalles 
are never feen abroad; nor is it confident with the ufage of any 
Mahometan nation even to fpeak of the female part of a family. 

The Kafhmirians are flout, well formed, and as the natives 
of a country lying in the thirty-fourth degree of latitude, may be 
termed a fair people, and their women in fouthern France or Spain 
would be called Brunettes. But having been prepouefled with an 
opinion of their charms, I fuffcred a fenfible difappointment } 
though 1 faw fome of the female dancers mofl celebrated for beauty 
and the attractions of their profeflion. A coarfenefis of figure 
generally prevails among them, with broad features, and they too 
often have thick legs. Though excelling in the colour of their 


complexion, they are evidently furpafled by the elegant form and 
pleafing countenance of the women of fome of the weftern pro* 
vinces of India. 

The city of Kaflimire once abounded with courtezans, equally 
gay and affluent ; but the rigorous contributions of the Afghans 
have greatly reduced their number, and driven moft of thofe that 
Temain into a languid poverty. The few that I faw, afforded mt 
much pleafure by their graceful lkill in dancing, and voices pecu- 
liarly melodious. And here let me obfcrve, leaft I fhould after- 
wards forget, that the women of Kaflimire are Angularly fruit- 
ful, be the government ever fo opprcflive, or fortune at all points 
adverfe, no baneful effects are fcen to operate on the propagation 
of the fpecies, which is maintained with a fuccefsful perfeverance. 
I will not prefume to inveftigate the pbyfical caufe of a virtue fo 
copionfly inherent in the men and women of this country, but 
will fimply intimate to you that its waters are well ftored with 
fifh, which is thought to be a generative ftimulus, and constitutes 
e principal article of the food of the people. 

The language of Kaflimire evidently fprings from the San- 
scrit ftock, and refcmbles in found, that of the Mahrattas, though 
tyith more harftinefs, which has probably induced the inhabitants 
to compofe their fongs in the Perfic, or adopt thofe of the Perfian 
poets. Yet in defpite of the unpleafant tone of their fpeech, there 
is fcarcely a perfon in the country, from youth to old age, who 
has not a tafte for mufic. 


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The Kaftimirians are gay and lively people, with ftrong pro- 
pcnfitics to pleafure. None are more eager in the purfuit of wealth, 
have more inventive faculties in acquiring it, or who devile more 
modes of luxurious expenfe. When a Kammirian, even of the 
lowcft order, finds himfelf in the poffeflion of ten millings, he 
lofes rto time in ahcmbling his party, and launching into the lake, 
forces himfelf till the laft farthing is fpent. Nor can the defpotiftn 
of an Afghan government, which loads them with a various op- 
preffion and cruelty, eradicate this ftrong tendency to diffipation, 
yet their manners, it is faid, have undergone a manifeft change, 
fincc the difmemberment of their country from Hindoftan. En- 
couraged by the liberality and indulgence of the Moguls, they gave 
a loot to their pleafurcs and the bent of their genius. They ap- 
peared in gay appard, conftru&ed coftly buildings, and were much 
addiaed to the pleafures of the table. The interefts of this pro- 
vince went fig ftrongly favored at the^ourt, that every complaint 
againft its governors was attentively liftened to, and any attempt 
to molcft the people, reftrained or punilhed. 

In the reign of Aurungzebe, when the revenue of the different 
portions of the empire exceeded that of the prcfent day, the fum 
collected in Kammire amounted to three and a half lacks of rupees, 
but at this time, not lefs than twenty laiks are extracted by the 
Afghan governor, who, if his tribute be regularly remitted to 
court, is allowed to execute with impunity every act of violence. 
This extreme rigour has fenfibly affe&cd tte deportment and man- 


ners of the Kafhmiriam, who Ihrink with dread from the Afghan 
opprefljons, and are fearful of making any difplav of opulence. 
A Georgian merchant, who had long refided in the country, gave 
me the moft fetisfa&ory information of Kafhmire. He faid, that 
when he firft vifited the province, which was governed by a perfon 
of a moderate difpofition, the people were licentious, volatile and 
profufe. But, that fince the adminiftration of the late chief, an 
Afghan of a fierce and rapacious temper, they had become difpi- 
rited, their way of living mean, their drefs flovenly, and though, 
of a temper proverbially loquacious, they were averfe from com* 
municating ordinary intelligence. 

During my refidence in Kafhmire, I often witnefted the harm 
treatment which the common people received at the hands of their 
matters, who rarely iffued an order without a blow of the fide of 
their hatchet, a common weapon of the Afghans, and ufed by 
them in war, as a battle-axe. 

province are held under a grievous fubjedion, and endure evils 
the moft mortifying to human nature, being equally opprefled and 
infulted, the various teftimonies brought home to me of their 
common depravity of difpofition, made me the lefs fenfible of 
their diftrefs and in a ftiort time fo faint was the trace of 
it on my mind, that I even judged them worthy of their adverfo 

In viewing the manners of a people at large, it were at once a 
facrifice of truth and every claim to hiftorical merit, to introduce 


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pafilonate or fanciful colouring j yet the coolcft reflection does 
not withold me from faying, that I never knew a national body of 
men more impregnated with the principles of vice, than the natives 
of Kafhmire. The character of a Kaflimirian is confpicuoufly 
feen, when inverted with official power. Supported by an au- 
thority which prefcribes no limits to its agents, in the accumula- 
tion of public emoluments, the Kafhmirian difplays the genuine 
compofition of his mind. He becomes intent on immediate ag- 
grandizement, without rejecting any inftrument which can promote 
his purpofe. Rapacious and arrogant, he evinces in all his actions, 
deceit, treachery, and that fpecies of refined cruelty, which ufually 
actuates the conduct of a coward. And it is laid, that he is 
equally fickle in his connections, as implacable in enmity. In be- 
half of humanity, I could with not to have been capacitated to 
exhibit fo difgufting a picture, which being conftantly held out to 
me for near three months, in various lights, but with little relief, 
imprefled me with a general diflikc of mankind. 

The Kaflimirians are fo whimfically curious, that when any 
trivial queftion is propofed to them, its intention and purpofe 
is enquired into with a firing of futile interrogatories, before 
the neceffary information is given j and a fhopkeeper rarely ac- 
knowledges the pofiefiion of a commodity, until he is apprized of 
the quantity required. In examining the fituation in which thefe 
people have been placed, with its train of relative effects, the fpe- 
culative moralift will perhaps difcover one of the larger lources, 
Vol. II. D from 


from whence this caft of manners and difpofition has arifen. He 
will perceive that the lingular pofition of their country, its abun- 
dant and valuable produce, with a happy climate, tend to excite 
ftrong inclinations to luxurjr and effeminate pleafure* ; and he is 
aware, that to counteract caufes, naturally tending to enervate 
and corrupt the mind, a fyftem of religion or morality is neceflary 
to inculcate the love of virtue, and efpecially, to imprefs the youth 
with early fentiments of juftice and humanity. But he will evi- 
dently fee, that neither the religious or the moral precepts of the 
prefent race of Mahometans contain the principles of rectitude or 
philanthropy j that on the contrary, they are taught to look with 
abhorrence on the faireft portion of 1*ie globe, and to perfecute 
and injure thofe who are not inclofed in the fold of their prophet. 
Seeing then the Kammirians, prefiding as it were at the fountain 
head of plcafure, neither guided or checked by any principle or ex- 
ample of virtue, he will not be furprized, that they give a wide 
fcope to the paflions of the mind and the enjoyments of the 

Azad Khan, the prefent governor of Kafhmire, of the Af- 
ghan tribe, fucceeded his father Hadji * Kareem Dad, a domeftic 
officer of Ahmed Shah Duranny, and who was, at the death of 
that prince, advanced to the government of Kafhmire, by Timur 
Shah, as a reward for quelling the rebellion of the Amir Khan, 

* Thofe who have made the pilgrimage of Mecca are termed Hadji. 



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who has been already mentioned. Though the Kaftimirians ex- 
claim with bitternefs at the adminiftration of Hadji Kareem Dad, 
Who Was notorious for bis wanton cruelties and iniatiable avarice j. 
often for trivial offences, throwing the inhabitants, tyed by the 
back in pairs, into the river, plundering their property, and forcing 
their women of every defcription j yet they fay, he was a fyftcma- 
tical tyrant, and attained his purpofes, however atrocious, through 
a fixed medium. They hold a different language in fpeaking of 
the fon, whom they denominate the Zaulim Kham, a Perfic phrafc 
which exprelTes a tyrant without difcernment ; and if the fmaller 
portion of the charges againft him are true, the appellation u 
fitly beftowed. At the age of eighteen years ; he has few of the 
vices of youth ; he is not addicted to the pleafurcs of the haram, 
noi* to wine : he does not even fmoke the Hookah. But his a£ls 
of ferocity exceed common belief ; they would feem to originate 
in the wildeft caprice, and to difplay a temper rarely feen in the 
nature of man. 

That you may form fome fpecific knowledge of the chara&er 
of this, let me call him, infernal defpot, I will mention fome fa&8 
which were communicated during my refidence in the province. 
While he was pafling with his court, under one of the wooden 
bridges of the city, on which a crowd of people had aflembled to 
obferve the proceflion, he levelled his mufquet at an opening which 
he law in the path way, and being an expert markfman, he mot 
to death an unfortunate fpeftator. Soon after his acceffion to the 

D 2 govern- 


government, he accufed his mother of infidelity to her hufband, 
and in defiance of the glaring abfurdity which appeared' in the al- 
legation, as well as the anxious intreaties of the woman who had 
borne him to fave her from (hame, fhe was ignominioufly driven 
from the palace; and about the fame time, on a like frivolous 
pretence, he put one of his wives to death. A film on one of his 
eyes had baffled the attempts of many operators, and being impa- 
tient at the want of fuccefs, he told the laft furgeon who had 
been called in, that if the diforder was not remedied within a 
limited time, allowing but a few days, his belly fhould be cut 
open i the man failed in the cure,, and Azad Khan verified hi* 
threat. ' . >tl^^f 

These palTages were related to me by different pcrfons, fbme 
ftrangers in the country, others, who from the ftations they 
held, would rather have been induced to fpcak favourably. 
Azad Khan had, in the three firft months of his government, 
become an objeit of fuch terror to the Kafhmirians, that the 
cafual mention of his name produced an inftant horro? and an 
involuntary fuppli cation of the aid of their prophet. Among 
the leffcr order of his exactions,, but which kerned to me the 
moll unpopular and difcouraging, is that levied from the cour- 
tezans or dancing girls^ who are obliged to account for every 
fum of money they receive, and to pay the larger fhare of it 
to the intendant of the police j nor are they allowed to attend 
at any feftival or entertainment, without the peVmiflion of that 


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officer. The rigorous treatment of this clafs of females, which 
are ever the mod pleafing to fociety from the indulgence granted 
to them, has here effected a grievous change j for though Kafh- 
mire is known to abound in fine women, few are now feen 
among the courtezans. 

A revenue of between twenty and thirty lacks of rupees 
is collected from this province, of which a tribute of (even 
lacks is remitted to the treafury of Timor Shah. The army of 
Kaflimire, a part of which I have feen embodied, con lifts of 
about three thoufand horfe and foot, chiefly Afghans,* who had 
received little pay for two years, and many of them, for want 
of a better fubfiftence, were obliged to live on the Kernel of 
the Singerah,f or water-nut, which is plentifully produced in 
the lakes of the country. 

In noticing the character of the governor of Kafhmirc, which 
is compofed of little elfe than a blind deftru&ive cruelty, you 

• The natives of this province are rarely feen engaged in a military occupation, 
from which their genius feems averfe , and it is held an eftablifhed rule in the Afghan 
government, to refufe the admittance of a Kafhmirian into their army. The common 
people ufually carry abroad with them in the winter feafon an earthen ftove, which 
hanging near the thigh, gives it a (torched appearance j and by this marlc a Kafhmirian 
is discovered, (hould he by ileal th endeavour to cnltft. The fling, in the ufc of which 
they are expert, feems to be their favourite weapon, and enables them with little va- 
riation to oppofe an adverfary at a diitance, and from places of fecurity. 

f The Singerah alfo conftitutes a great portion of the food of the lower clafs of 
the natives, and the cxclufive privilege of vending it, yields annually about twelve 
tbouiand pounds to the government. 



will be furpri2cd that he is not punirtied or reftrained by ttie 
court. But when it is confidered that the approach to this re- 
mote province, leads through hoftile or independant territories, 
that Timur Shah is equally witheld from diftant enterprize by the 
accumulated arrears and confequent weaknefs of his army, to which 
may be added the fear of domeftic treafon, and a native indolence 
of temper, a fufficient caufe will be feen for his pafiive regard to 
the interiour government of Kaflimire. Contenting himfelf with 
the tribute, he is feldom difpofed to controul the conduct of a re- 
mote governor. I am to exprefs a regret, that previoufly to my 
route, I had not perufed the accurate and candid memoirs of Mr. 
Bernier, who Hands in the firft rank of writers on Indian hiftory : 
yet, mould this curfory relation throw any light on his defcription 
of Kalhmire, as lively as it is juft, by filling up a chafm, or mark- 
ing the changes which have happened fince his day, I fhall hold 
it in fome eftimation, and confider any inconveniency which might 
have arifen from my journey thither, honorably requited. Mr. 
Bernier enjoyed advantages which have fallen to the lot of few 
Afiatic travellers, and fortunately for the learned world, his talents 
amply improved them. He travelled into Kafhmire in the fuite of 
Danifhmund Khan, a favourite Omrah of Aurungzebe, who 
having a tafte for fcience and letters, encouraged this ingenious 
Frenchman to attentively inveftigate the great variety of its curious 
produce. He has alfo defcribed the caufes of that important re- 
volution, which raifed Aurungzebe to the throne of Hindoftan. 

- ♦ As 

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As he was perfonally engaged in the fcene of action, arid an eye 
witnefs of many of the principal events, all which are related in 
a fimple interesting language, I earneftly recommend to you a dili- 
gent perufal of his instructive and judicious book. This writer 
having chiefly aflbciated with Mahometans, who invariably poflefs 
an abfolute abhorrence of the religion of the Hindoos, and being 
deftitute of the proper documents for the refearch, he has not 
been equally fuccefsful in his explanation of the principles and 
ipirit of the Hindoo doctrines, and it is only in that difcuflion I 
prefume to doubt the opinions of Mr. Bernier. After clofing 
this diflertation on Kaftimire, you mull permit me to relate my 
defultory adventures in that country. 

On my arrival at the city, I was accommodated with an apart- 
ment in the houfe of Zulphucar Khan, and feeing rjim of fo re- 
fpeclable a character, and difpofed to do me kindnefs, I had re- 
(blved to remain there, but my fervant, the fame perfon who had 
fit upon me at Jumbo, difcovered me to the family to whom he 
knew I had brought introductory letters, and being urgently 
prefled, not to fay peftered, to lodge at the houfe of a Sheich 
Mirza, the brother of my Jumbo hoft, I was forced out of the 
friendly roof of the Khan, whom I (hall ever remember with af- 
fection and efteem. His father having filled high Stations in the 
upper part of India, at the period of the Afghan and Sicque inva- 
fions, Zulphucar Khan, who was himfelf prefent at fome of the 
aiclions, had acquired a converfant knowledge of the motives that 



actuated the different parties ; and his remarks on the various 
events of thofe times, from which I derived much ufeful infor- 
mation, denoted a found difcerning judgement, little heated by 
prejudice, or fettered by thofe narrow precepts which ufually fway 
the mind of a Mahometan. He ftricily obferved the ceremonies 
of his religion, which were performed with an apparent convic- 
tion of their reclitude j and, though he daily faw my remiflion of 
the cuftoraary worfhip of his family, he neither xemarked or 
cenfured it. 

At Sheich Mirza's, I was received with fplendid offers of 
fritndmip, and all that farrago of proteftation, the common bur- 
then of Afiatic language, which goes for nothing. The truth 
was, the brother at Jumbo had reprefented me as a wealthy merchant 
who would produce great profit to the houfe and this object de- 
luged me at the firft meeting with compliments, which com- 
menced with embracing my legs, and ended in warning my beard 
in rofc water. Nor did he ceafe to load me with a fcries of 
difgufting attentions, until I told him that my bufinefs obliged 
me to proceed, without delay, to Kabul. The arrival of a mer- 
chant from Conftantinople compleated my relief ; for then the 
Sheick had no lcifure to fay a civil word to any one, and feeing 
indeed, that my refidence promifed no emolument to the houfe, he 
would without ceremony have turned me out of it, had another 
Turk appeared. 

As there are no karavanferas in Kaflimire, commercial Gran- 

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gers are lodged with their brokers, who finding an account in af- 
fording fuch accommodation, are gjnerally poffefled of large and 
convenient habitations. A Georgian, who occupied the room 
next to mine, and was a very agreeable neighbour, did not, I ob- 
fcrved, give a ready credit to my ftory, which he crofs exami- 
ned with fomc tokens of fufpicion ; and one day, having de- 
fired to look at my head, he decidedly, pronounced it to be 
that of a chriftian. But he became alarmed, when I cautioned 
him, in a fcrious tone, to be lefs hafty in forming fo danger- 
ous an opinion; for he muft know, that to beftov/ fuch an 
appellation * on a believer of the true faith, was a grievous of- 
fence in a Mahometan country. In a future converiation with 
the Georgian, he explained to me, and proved by comparifon, 
that the head of a Chriftian is broad behind and flatted out 
at the crown ; that a Mahometan's head grows narrow at the 
top, and like a monkies has a conic form. This Georgian was 
affociated in trade with one of his countrymen then refiding at 
Benares, and feeing that he viewed me with miftruft, the com- 
munication of which muft have had mifchicvous effects, I 
judged it prudent to difclofe my true ftory ; premifing, with an 
aflurance, that fhould treachery or his indifcretion bring on 
me any mifchance, his cftatc at Benares would become forfeit, 
and the perfon of his companion expofed to puniftiment. This 

• Nazarenc is a term of bitter reproach among the northern Mahometans. 
Vol. II. E language, 



language, fupportcd by a difpofition naturally honourable, en- 
fured his zealous attachment, from which I derived many ufes, 
during my Hay in Kaftimire. 

The Dewan, whom I daily attended, ftill continued his 
former kindnefs, and agreeably to his promife, foliated for me 
the governor's permiflion to leave the province. The memorial 
prefented by the Dewan, fet forth, that a Turk who had come 
from Hindoftan, was defirous of palling, with two domeftics, 
through Kafhmire, in his way to Conftantinople. When this 
purport was made known to me, I ftrongly feared its failure; 
for Grangers rarely vifit Kaflimire for the purpofe of curiofity 
or amufement, and as no fpecific occupation was afcribed to 
me, I obfcrved to the Dewan that a refufal might be expected. 
/The apprehcnfion was wholly verified in Azad Khan's faying, 
that the Turks were good foldiers, which he then wanted, and 
that he would employ me in his army. It was in vain the 
Dewan reprefented the folicitucje of vifiting my country, whence 
I had been long abfent, and that little benefit would accrue 
from the fcrvices of a perfon under fuch conftraint. He for- 
bade the Hindoo, in a voice that made him tremble, to ceafe 
from urging the requcft, for he had formed an ultimate refo- 

When the Dewan intimated to me the information, I no- 
ticed an evident agitation in his countenance; and though you 
may fuppofc that my mind was ill at ea(e, I forced upon myfelf 


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that fpecies of refignation which is habitual to an Afiatic in his 
day of trouble, and gravely affected to adminifter a comfort to the 
Dewan, which was more wanting to myfelf. From that moment, 
I never faw him,* nor did I ever impart to any one the ftory of 
my failure, well knowing, that had it become public, no one would 
have dared to have given me afliftance or even (belter. 

On revolving the different modes of extrication from this 
dilema, I bethought myfelf of the Banker, on whom I had 
brought a draft from Jumbo ; and in the courfe of a day off 
two I applied to him for a paffport. He very frankly affurcd 
me of his fcrvices, from which, as he was at that time high 
in the eftimation of the governor, I entertained fanguine hopes 
of fuccefs, and to obviate the rifque that might arife from the 
name of Khuroe, which had been inferted in the former me- 
morial, I now took that of Eufuff, a Mahometan merchant, 
going on a commercial adventure to Pefliour. But on the day 
when the paffport was to have been iffued, as if my evil fiar 
had determined to rule, the banker fell under the difpleafure of 
the defpot, which fo wholly deranged him, that my bufinefs no 
longer occupied his thoughts. He had been folicited to advance a 
confiderable loan to the government, but aware of the rifque of 
fuch a negotiation, he pleaded inability, ant! the laft time I went 

• This unfortunate man was I underftand, afterwards put to death by Azad Khan, 
in one of bis many moments of capricious cruelty. 

E e 2 to 


to his houfe, he was trembling in an agony of fear, from an ap- 
prchenfion of Azad Khan's refentment.* . 

In treating of the government of Kafhmire, I omitted to men- 
tion, that it had not hitherto extended its apprehenfion to mer- 
chants, who, from the wealth which they introduced into the 
province, were refpetted and even indulged. The obftacles that 
flood in the way of my departure, now became ferious, and gave 
me much anxiety. I was thrown into the power of a capricious 
tyrant, under a fcmblance alio, which if difcovered, might be 
fatal, and I was precluded by the late occurrence, from a perfonal 
application to the court. Endeavouring to remove the appearance 
of chagrin, I intreated the Georgian, who has been mentioned, to 
expedite my departure, though without communicating any part 
of the former failures. Only obferving that the multiplicity of 
bufinefs, ncceflarily engroffing the attention of the devvan, of whofc 
friendihip for me he had been apprifed prevented me from 
giving him further trouble. The bufinefs was undertaken with a 
zealous alacrity, and by an unremitted attendance of fifteen days, 
aided by a fmall bribe, was accomplifhcd. Having hired a horfe 
from a native of Peihour, who was returning to that city, and 
taken into my fervice a Perfian boy, on the i nh of June I left 
Kafhmire and my honed Georgian friend. 

The river Jalum, at the diftance of ten miles from the 

He waf, at a future period, \ am informed, put to death by the Afgbzn. 


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city, is formed by the hollow furface of the country, into a meet 
of water, of feven or eight miles in circumference, called in the 
Kalhmirian language, the WuUer, which has a gentle fouthern 
current, and is gradually contracted as the land rifes. 

On the morning of the 1 2th, arrived at Sompre, nine cofles, 
a populous town on the eaftern fide of the J alum, where the pall- . 
port was depofited and another iflued. After a halt of three hours, 
which were chiefly employed in repairing the riding tackle, which 
was all of cordage, bridle, ftirrups and girth, I proceeded in com- 
pany with Mohubullah, the proprietor of the freed, and Huflin, 
the Pcrfian b,>y, to the final I village of Markore, a ftage of ten 
cofles. Mohubullah made a good travelling pillaw, of which the 
bones were picked, and pluming myfelf on having outwitted the 
governor of Kalhmire, I went to flcep in an adjacent mofque with 
a light heart. 

On the 13th, at Hourree Dana, four cofles, an hamlet, fituate 
three miles within the boundary of the province. The night 
being cool, I had thrown over my bed-cloths a coat, in the pocket 
of which was depofited the paflport ; when, in an evil hour, juft 
as I was beginning to awake, a thief matched my coat, and made 
his efcape. Had the coat been of any other colour than red, it would 
not, 1 believe, have attracted the marauder's notice ; but a fpaik 
of vanity, many of which have lighted me into fcenes of trouble, 
prompted the purchafe of this gaudy garment, which before had 



been often flared at. I mentioned to the officer in charge of 
the pafs at the boundary, the affair of the theft and the lofs of the 
pafsport, to the truth of which Mohubullah bore teftimony, ad- 
ding that I was Scid, and it was well known the Seids, never ut- 
tered a falfity; Huffin alfo fwore by the beard of his father 
to the truth of the fa&. The officer who was a Ka(hmirian 
heard the ftory, with a grave countenance, and looking as if he 
did not believe a word of it, faid that I muft procure another pafs- 
port. Seeing that words made no impreffion on this vigilant 
guardian of his poft, (which it would have furprifed me, if they 
had.) I fecretly, tendered him a few rupees,* for his good will. 
The fight of the money produced an immediate effect on every fea- 
ture of his face, which foftening into a fmile of compliance, I 
moved on. — Our party had not preceded three hundred yards, 
when, four men were perceived running after us with great fpeed 
and, in a loud voice, ordering us to halt. On coming up they 
feized me, alledging I was a ftate criminal, whom they were di- 
rected to convey to the city j nor did I cfcape from their hands, 
until I had applied the argument, which had before opened the 
gate, but to a much larger amount. — Huflin, who had feen the 

• The Rupee is the current coin of Karomire, and that ftruck at Moradabad in 
Rohilcund, is heM in the greatefr eftimation. From the bafenefe of the filver a large 
difcount is allowed on that of Kafhmire. Copper money of the value of a halfpenny 
and cowreys, a fmall marine (hell, compofc the other currency of this province. 


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pafsport and witneffed the theft, exprefted aftoniftiment at the 
largenefs of the fum, and accufed me of extravagant folly. But, 
he did not know the caufe of my arverfion to a public examination. 

On the 14th, at Doumbah, fifteen cofles, a fmall village de- 
pendant on the chief of Muzzufferabad. The limit of Kaftimire 
on this quarter is terminated by a low thick wood, the edge of 
which is fkirted by a rivulet, and, on the other fide rifes a lofty 
chain of mountains, ftretching to the north and fouth, whofe fum- 
mits are in fome parts, now, covered with fnow, a deep tract of 
which I crofted. The inhabitants of the Muzzufferabad diftricts, de- 
nominated Bombaus, are Mahometans of the Afghan tribe and 
inimical to the Kafhmirians, who, under the father of the pre- 
fent governor, had laid their territory wafte. The rumour of ano- 
ther invafion prevailing, at this time, I was ftriclly examined, but 
the management of Mohubullah, with a fmall donation, gave us 
an unmolefted progrcfs. The face of the country exhibits a con- 
tinued view of mountains, on the fide of which are feen patches of 
cultivated ground and fcattered hamlets of three or four cottages. 

On the 1 5th, at Noufere, twelve cofies, part of the road bended 
over the brow of a fteep and craggy mountain, at the foot of 
which, a river, which here, takes the name of Muzzufferabad,* 
runs with extreme rapidity ; and breaks upon the numerous infu- 
lated rocks that interrupt its paffage, with a noife of thunder. 

• The proper name of this river is the Kilhcn Gunga. 



On the 16th, at Paunch-Graum, fix coffes, the road was (Hit 
more difficult of paffage than that of yefterday. The mountain 
being in fome places fo deep, that projecting beams are fixed, into- 
its fide, to fupport a path of planks, for the accommodation of 
foot paffengers ; horfes are font by another traft. This path hath 
been lately repaired, out of the favings of charity, by a Mahometan 
mendicant, who had, alfo, in a recefs of the hill, ere£ted a fmall 
building for the refrefhment of travellers. It being one of thefe 
few acts of public benefit, within the compafs of my knowledge, 
performed, by this clafs of men, I deem the communication a 
matter of confeience ; for, too frequent occafions of reprobating 
them have already offered. 

On the 17th, at Muzzuffcrabad, ten coffes, a town (landing on 
the eaftern bank of the Kifhcn Gunga,* fmall, but populous, and 
the refidence of a chief entitled Sultan Mahmoud, who after divi- 
ding the grcateft portion of his territory among the younger bran- 
ches of his family, referved this town, with a diftricl yielding 
about a lack of rupees, for his private maintenance. 

On the morning of the 18th, I croffed the river, and joined a 
(haul kafilah proceeding to Pcfliour. A ferry boat ufed at this 

• The Kiflicn Gunga runs here, to the left, with a courfe nearly fouth-wefl and 
fells, I was informed, into the Jalum, among the mountains, at the head of the Pun- 
jab. 1 faw many people crofs this river, on nn inflated meep or dog's fkin, which, fup- 
porting the head and bread of the paflenger, is impelled and guided by the motion of 
his legs. 


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place, is frequently, by the violence of the current and a rocky 
more, dallied to pieces; And being now, in this ftate, I patted 
over, tho' with much difficulty, a bridge of ropes, about 100 yards 
in length. A ftout rope, fattened to wooden potts, on either more, 
has attached to it, a certain number of carved pieces of wood in 
the form of oxen yokes, with the forks placed vertically; and, 
the fides of the yokes being embraced by fmaller ropes, afford a 
hold to the paiTengers. — The road from the limit of Kaftimire to 
Muzzufferabad tends to the fouth-weft and leads over a country, 
covered with mountains, which are thinly interfe&cd with abrupt 

On the 18th, halted at a mofque, on the weftern fide of Kiflien 

On the 19th, the kafilah proceeded a cofs inland from the river. 
The heat of the weather during the day, and the remains of a 
ficknefs had fo enervated me, that I could not walk a few paces, 
without extreme pain and laflitude. But, my little wants were, 
readily, fupplied by Mohubullah, who procured good provifions, 
cooked them, and was my pipe bearer. 

On the 20th, at Dunnee, three cones, a fmall village, on the 
eaftern bank of the Nhah, a narrow rapid river, which falls into 
the Kiflien Gunga. The kafilah remained at this place, until the 
inhabitants had constructed a bridge, which confiilcd of two entire 
beams, at the diftance of three feet afundcr, with an interfticc of 
planks, fattened by cordage. The performance of this work, a very 
Vol. II. F tedious 

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tedious one, was chiefly expedited by Sultan Mahmoud, In perfon, 
who, though an old man, (hewed a perlcvering activity with a great 
(hare of good temper. The materials of the bridge, which had 
been floated from fbme diftance, having, by the force of the cur- 
rent, been carried below the proper ftation, we were detained at 
Dunnee for another fupply of wood, until the 28th, when we 
moved three coffes, and halted in an uninhabited valley. 

On the 29th, on the fummit of a mountain, ten coffes, in the 
diftricts of Jiddoon, governed by a Patan chief. In a ftcep part 
of this hill, where the path, from fome rain that had fallen, was 
flippery, my horfe ftumbled ; and had not a tree been within 
reach, a branch of which I caught, I muft have been thrown down 
a lofty declivity. This night I experienced fome of thofe incon- 
veniencies to which travellers of my defcription are occafionally 
fubject. My baggage was thoroughly foaked by the rain ; and 
water, which had already fo much annoyed me, was not to be 
found, nor a flick of fuel. Thefe embarraffments, which made me 
tefty and much difpofed to quarrel with my neighbours, were at 
length obviated by the active fervices of Mohubullah, who having 
brought water and fuel from a long diftance, prepared a mefs of 
broth from fome mutton in our ftore, which afforded a regale to a 
very hungry party. The Jiddoon road being difficult of accefs, is 
little frequented, and, until the paffage of our kafilah, had never, 
I was informed, been ufed by merchants. The common tract lies 
through the Puckley territory, but the inhabitants of that quarter, 


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notorious for a fierce and predatory difpofition, had lately com- 
mitted fo many robberies on commercial property, that the director 
of our party judged the route too hazardous. 

On the 30th, at Manghellee, fix cofles, a fmall town, the re- 
fidence of a Shadee Khan, the chief of Tiddoon. Halted at this 
place for the adjufting the payment of duties, and of an efcort, 
that had accompanied our progrefs through the country, until the 
the 4th of July, when we proceeded to Kotillce, a fort in the pof. 
feflion of Meimoun Khan, a brother and vaflal of the chief of Ja- 
noul. Halted on the 5th, to compofe a difference of opinion, 
that had arifen among the merchants, rcfpefting the choice of 
a road. 

On the 6th, at Nheamut or Enayet Serau, eight cofles, a for- 
tified village, with a karavanfera, fituate on the weftern limit of 
Janoul, the territory of Gul Shere Khan, a Mahometan of the 
Afghan tribe. Being told that the merchants would be detained 
fome days at this place, for the difcharge of cuftoms, and thence 
proceed to the town of Beer, the refidence of Gul Shcre, where 
as at many other ftations, a long delay would be occafioned, I 
propofed to Mohubullah the profecution of our journey by a 
nearer route. He gave a ready affent to the meafure, afluring me 
alfo, that his knowledge of the country and many of the principal 
people promifed very reafonablc fuccefs } but he required, as the 
firft condition, an implicit obedience to all his directions, and a 

F 2 reftraint 


reftraint on that impatience of temper, with which he was forry 
to obferve I was too much actuated. 

On the 7th we left the Scrauce, and conducted by a guide 
through an unfrequented path, we parted without moleftation the 
Tyrrhone diftricls, where moft danger was apprehended, and 
halted, during the heat of the day, at a fmall fortified village. 

In the evening, after various alarms, we arrived at the fort 
of Kote, nine coffes, which, with an adjacent diftricr, is held 
by a Nujjceb Khan. It is to be noticed, that Enayet Serau 
ftands on the weft fide of a break of that great range of moun- 
tains, extending along the head of the Punjab, and within which 
I had travelled, with little variation, from the Ganges to that 
place, whence I entered the plain country. 

On the 8th, at Mourree, five coffes, a fmall village, depend- 
ing on the Harbarry territory, which is governed by a power- 
full Afghan chief. We had fet out from Kote in good fpirits, 
enjoying the idea of being liberated from a party obftruclcd by 
conftant delays, and the hope of making an expeditious journey, 
through a tract, which was, we now found, expofed to the in- 
curfions of banditti. But thefe pleafing thoughts were wholly 
difpelled by the intelligence of a paffenger, who told us, that 
when he left Kote, a body of horfemen were preparing to fol- 
low and plunder us. Mohubullah immediately refolved to re- 
turn to the fort, where he (aid they would be deterred from 


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offering any violence, and having lodged me in a houfe of one 
of the inhabitants, he went to a neighbouring village, the refi- 
dence of a Seid, who had acquired a great influence in that quar- 
ter, and folic ited his protection, which he informed me by a mef„ 
fenger had been readily granted. On receiving this favorable in- 
telligence, I went to the Seid to return thanks for this opportune 
afliftance, and found him ftretched on a bed amidft a grove of 
fhady trees, and furrounded with boys, fome fanning him, while 
others were gently rubbing his body. Though his manners evi- 
dently difplaycd that fuperiority which the fuppofed defendants of 
Mahomet ufually affume from their lineage and rank, he was not 
wanting in a polite civility; nor did he refufe fome fmall offerings, 
that were prefented to him with much refpeft. The authority of 
this man was fo implicitly admitted, that we were efcorted in 
fafety by a fmgle domeftic, whofe fervices were liberally rewarded. 
Fear produces in the mind ftrong efFufions of an apparent gene- 
rofity and gratitude, and when (kilfully wrought on by the man 
of the world, feldom fails to yield him an ample harveft. It is a 
fevere reflection on humanity, fays Bruycre, that the difpofition 
of man is ever the moft effectually meliorated in the hour of 
calamity. At Mourrce we received intelligence, that a Pefliour 
kafilah, had a few hours before departed on its way home, which 
gave us great joy, efpecially to Mohubullah, who now favv the 
near profpc6t of a conclufion to the perilous talk he had under- 



On the morning of the 9th, before day light, we left Mourree, 
and after travelling fome hours through a wild and gloomy tra£r, 
on which the turn of my mind, threw perhaps, an additional 
fhade, and encountering many ill-looking fellows, who viewed us 
with a keen eye, we joined the Pelhour party, where we ex- 
perienced from the countrymen of Mohubullah, every token of 

At noon arrived at Hyder Bunghee, nine cofles, a populous 
village dependant on Attock, the principal town of a fmall dis- 
trict, which acknowledges the fupremacy of Timur Shah. The 
chief, an Afghan, yields an obedience conformable to the motions 
of that prince, or the leading motives of the day ; but, when des- 
titute of other refource, he furniflies a tribute of about fifty thou- 
fand rupees. 

On the 10th, at Bazzar, five cofles, a fmall village, at the dif- 
tance of three quarters of a mile from the weftcrn (bore of the 
river Indus,* which we crofied about twenty miles above the town 
of Attock. The ftream, though not agitated by wind, was rapid 
with a rough undulating motion, and about three quarters of a 
mile, or a mile in breadth, where it was not interrupted by 
iflands ; and having, as nearly as I could judge, a weft and by 
fouth courfc. The water was much difcolourcd by a fine black 

• In the Pcrfian language, ufually called the Ab or Water of Scind, and fomclimc* 
Neil Ab or Blue Water ; aad by the Hindoos Scind and Attock. 




land, which, when put into a vcffel, quickly fubfided. It was fo 
cold, from (I apprehend,) a large mixture of mow, then thawed 
by the fummer heats, that in drinking it, my teeth fufFered a vio- 
lent pain. In our boat were embarked feventy perfons, with much 
merchandize and fome horfes. This unweildy lading, the high 
fwell of the current, and the confufion of the frightened paflengers 
rfiade the paflage dangerous and very tedious. 

The Indus forms a ftrong barrier to Hindoftan on the weft, 
and it Teems a manifeft truth, that had the Indians made their 
grand ftand on the banks of this river, at the period of the Tartar, 
Afghan, and Perfian invafions, their empire might have made a 
powerful refinance. Armies at all times have fuftained difficulties 
and damage in croffing the Indus, but the attempt to force its 
paflage mud be arduous and full of danger. 

The road from MuzzufFerabad, tending to the fouth-weft, led 
me through the mountains, into the upper part of the Punjab, 
at Nheamut Serau ; from which place to Kote, are feen fome 
fcattered hills j but thence, the country is plain and thinly wooded. 
The inhabitants, chiefly Afghans, or as they are called, in India, 
Patans, live in fmall forts or walled villages, and entertain fuch mu- 
tual dread and diftruft of each other, that a fingle traveller is a 
rare object. The depredations of the Sicques, on the Attock and 
adjacent diftricts, generally fubjeft this tract of country to much 
deflation, and a failure of rain, in the preceding year, now gave 
it the appearance of a defert. 



On the 1 ith, at Akorah, a fmall town. At the diftance of fix 

miles from the great river, crofTed the Attock, fo called, in thefe 
parts, from its falling in the Indus, in the vicinity of the town 
of that name ; but, in fomc of the interior parts of Afghanis an, 
it is denominated the Kabul river * The weather had now become 
extremely hot ; and I was often furprized, at my ability to bear, 
with fcarccly a fhelter, the force of fo fcorching a fun. I arrived 
at Akorah about noon j when, immediately entering a fpacious 
cool mofque, I fprcad my bed, and lay down much at my eafe. 
In the evening, the time of a common prayer, being defired, by 
one of the Mollahs or Priefts, to prepare myfclf for the ceremony, 
I urged in excufe, the debilitated ftatc of my body which prevented 
the requifitc performance of fo incumbent a duty ; looking at 
me with contempt, he faid, it was the more ncceflary to pray, 
that I might obtain better health. At midnight, I perceived a 
perfon endeavouring to take my turban from the bed-clothes, 
and being caught by the arm, he told me in a faultcring voice, 
that he was the Mollah of the mofque, and, from his fpcech, I 
believe, the man who had reprehended my neglect of prayer. 
What think you, my friend, of thefe Mahometans, who, if they 
wafh and pray at the five ftatcd times, abftain from wine and the 
flefh of hogs, and utter a firing of Arabic ejaculations which they do 
not underltand, believe that they have procured the divine licence 

• Its courfc lying within fix miles to the fouih-caft of that city. 



to violate the laws of juftice. This opinion is not formed on the 
moment, but has arifen from long experience and the intimate in- 
tercourfe, which my various occupations in India have produced - t 
and is now fo firmly fubftantiated by undeviating teftimony, that 
it (hapes my general fentiments of the Mahometan character. 
When they daringly commit thefe afts on each other, even amidft 
the rites of their religion, what is to withold their attacks on thofe 
of a different faith ? 

This day a body of Afghan cavalry encamped in the environs 
of Akorah, and overfpread the country like a fwarm of locufts, 
devouring and deftroying wherever they went. It feemed as if the 
land was invaded, they entered in a violent manner, every vil- 
lage within their fcope, and fed themfelves and horfes at the 
expenfe of the inhabitants. Such expeditions afford thefe hun- 
gry creatures almoft the only public means of fubfiftance; for 
when inactive, they are often reduced to fuch diftrefs, by the 
blind parfimony of their prince, that their horfes, arms, and 
cloths are fold for a livelihood. 

On the 12th, at the village of Peer Pyah, ten cofles. 

On the 13th, at the village of Kalalah, eight cofles, the 
refidence of Mohubullah's family, where I was treated with 
much hofpitality. The male inhabitants of this village, 
are all proprietors of mules, and employed in conveying mer- 
chandize, and from the name of their abode, denominated 

Vol. II. G On 


On the 14th, at Pefhour, four cofle?, a large, populous and 
opulent city, governed, with the dependant diftncis, by an Af- 
ghan officer, who remits to the capital a revenue of feven lacks 
of rupees. The road from the Indus to Pefhour, has nearly a weft 
and by fouth direction ; and the country to Akora is landy and 
interfperfed with ftonesj from thence to Pefhour, aie feen many 
trafts of cultivation. The city of Pethour was founded by th« 
great Acbar, who feeing, it is faid, the Afghans averfe from 
dwelling in towns and the occupations of commerce, encouraged 
the inhabitants of the Punjab, Mahometans, and Hindoos, to refort 
to his new fettlement, where their defcendants have greatly multi- 
plied. From its well chofen pofition, which unites, by a commer- 
cial chain, Perfia and Afghaniftan with India, Pcftiour has become 
an important mart, and the refidence of wealthy merchants ; efpe- 
cially of the {haul dealers, many of whom difliking the dangerous 
And tedious route of Kafhmire, are here enabled to make their 
purchafes at a moderate advance on the firft coft. I found a 
fmall fociety of Jews at Pefliour, living at their eafe, and in the 
enjoyment of an unreferved protection. 

The heat of Pefliour feemed to me more intenfe, than that of 
any country I have vifited in the upper parts of India. Other 
places may be warm hot winds blowing over tracts of fand, may 
drive us under the fheltcr of a wetted fkreen } hut at Pefhour, the 
atmofphere in the fummcr folftice, becomes almoft inflammable. 
Yet it muft be noticed, it favour of its falnbrity, even in this 
* torrid 

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torrid ftate, that the people enjoy uncommonly good health, and 
are little fubject to epidemical diforders. The markets are abun- 
dantly fupplied with provifions of an excellent kind, particularly 
the mutton, which is the flefli of the large tailed ftieep, faid to 
have been firft discovered in South America. Though the city is 
fo much frequented by merchants and travellers, it has no kara- 
vanfera and I thought myfelf fortunate in procuring admittance 
into an old mofque, where I continued for many days to dif- 
folve in an unremitting ftate of perfpiration, the mention of 
which, leads me to an occurrence, that involved me in great 

At Kafhmire, a part of my property had been converted 
into a bill of five hundred rupees, on Kabul, which was lodged 
in a canvas belt, that ferved me as a girdle ; on examining the 
condition of the bill, at Pefhour, I found the writing ib much 
obliterated by perfpiration, that no one could read, or even con- 
jecture its fubjeft ; from beginning to end, it had literally a black 
appearance. The apprehenfion of the evident difficulties which 
would attend my want of money, in a country where the moll 
fanguine hope could promife no afliftancc, and the neceffity of 
mixing in focieties, void of every good or rational principle, 
occafionally operated in deprefling my fpirits. But the defire 
which had originally impelled the journey, and the zeal which 
had hitherto maintained its purfuit, at length diffipated thefe 

G 2 gloomy 


gloomy impreflions, and in gay colours, defcribed a various 
fcenc of future pleafure. 

Being informed that a kafilah was immediately proceeding 
to Kabul, I hired a mule, and went to the adjacent village of 
Tackal, the ufual rendezvous of travellers, going to the weftvvard. 
On my arrival there, I learned, that the great kafilah ftill con- 
tinued at Pefhour, and that only fome horfemen confiding in their 
fpeed and arms, had moved early in the morning towards Kabul. 
A reflection on the predicament in which I then ftood, the flow 
pace of my mule, which had more the appearance of an afs, and 
the reprefentation of the muleteer, whofe fears prompted innu- 
merable falfities, flackened my ftrong inclination to efcape from 
the heats of Pefhour, and after making a fruitlefs attempt to over- 
take the horfemen, I returned to my lodging in the mofque. 
Sauntering one day in the bazar, the common refort of idle, as 
well as bufy people, I faw a perfon, with whom I had travelled 
from Muzzufferabad to Enayet Serau. We agreed, as our road 
was the fame, to travel together, and in the mean time to fliare 
the fame fare. So cordial is the pleafure refulting from fociety, 
fo naturally do we cling on each other, whether for fupport or 
amufement, that I immediately looked on this man as an approved 
friend, and felt a confidence from the connection, which fet my 
mind at perfect eale. On enquiry into the finance of my aflbciate, 
whofe name was Noor Mahomed, I difcovercd, that he poflefled in 

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cafli, one rupee, on which himfelf, a boy and a horfe, were to be 
fubfifted until his arrival at Kabul, a journey of twelve or four- 
teen days ; I perceived alfo, that on the expenditure of this fum, 
he would feck an aid from me. Fully apprized of the danger, as 
well as inconveniency of difclofing the amount of my property, I 
gravely told Noor Mahomed, that I had then no more than three 
rupees, which, with his fingle one, fhould be placed in a joint 
fund, and that on it and providence, we muft truft until our ar- 
rival at the capital. The Mahometan, with a countenance bright- 
ening with faith and zeal, exhorted me to be of good cheer ; for 
that true believers were never deferted in the hour of need. 

On the 25th of July, accompanying a large kafilah, in which 
a portion of the Kaflimire tribute, inverted in ftiauls, was con- 
veyed, we proceeded to the village of Tackal, three codes, where 
we laid in a provifion for three days journey, the enfuing tra£l of 
country, for that diftance, being thinly inhabited. 

On the 26th, at Timrood, four cofles, a fortified fmall vil- 
lage, fituate on the fouth fide of a range of rocky mountains, 
which reflected a fcorching heat on the plain beneath. The inha- 
bitants of this village, genuine Afghans, have little refpecT, though 
refiding fo near Pefliour, for either the perfon of Timur Shall, or 
his government, which was in fome degree evinced during our 
halt. The governor of Kaftimire had fent with our kafilah, for 
the ufe of the prince, four large dogs of Thibet, which were car- 
ried in litters, and attended with much care. The keepers had 




led them to drink at a pond, where an Afghan woman was,, 
filling her pitcher, but, on feeing thefe animals, which the Maho- 
metans hold unclean, flic put it down and by a Ihower of ftones 
and abufe drove the whole party from the place, loudly calling at 
the fame time, on the villagers to her affiftance, which fhe little 
needed. The Afghans immediately affembled and compleated the 
route of the dogs and their keepers, beftowing on the Shah, alfo, 
very contemptuous language, nor were they fuffered to return to 
the pond, until efcorted by the kafilah guard. 

On the 27th, at Dickah, eighteen cofles, a fmall village, (land- 
ing on the fouthern bank of the Kabul or Attock river, which 
here runs to the right, or eaftward. At the diftance of about two 
miles from Timrood, we entered a narrow defile, which interfecls 
the chain of mountains, lying to the north of the village. At the 
entrance of the pafs, the Afghans flopped the kafilah, and, excep- 
ting fome troops of the Shah, levied a fmall contribution on aU 
the paflengcrs ; they receive, alfo, an annual fum from the govern- 
ment of Pelhour, for permitting travellers to pafs unmolefted 
through their diftricl. In the firft part of this day's journey, fraught 
thoughout, with danger and fatigue, the rain which fell in torrents, 
nearly deftroyed my papers, and compleated the obliteration of the 
bill, now deftitute of mark or token j and I judged it as formally 
cancelled, as if a receipt had been pafled for the amount. Towards 
the clofe of the day, I was entangled, by my own indifcretion, in a 
perilous adventure, the hTue of which, muft be, wholly afcribed 


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to good fortune. When the rain had ceafed, the heat of the fun 
was extreme, and neither flielter or water was to be procured. 
Anxious to efcape from thefe inconveniencies, for the journey was 
yet long, and the kafilah proceeded at a flow rate,- about thirty of 
us, mounted, and the greater part well armed, refolved to leave 
theefcort. Had I derived the ufes which men ufually do from 
experience, and reflected tout a little on thofe refulting, efpecially 
in my fituation, from the fejtitta lente, I fhould not have joined this 
Quixote detachment. We had advanced about four miles, when 
a imall body of Afghans, which had iflued from the hills and flop- 
ped us, peremptorily demanded a Aim of money, as a toll for 
palling through their territory. Here I feel myfelf fenfibly hum- 
bled, when, as a faithful narrator, I am obliged to fay, that our 
corps behaved in a mod pufillanimous manner and facrificed with- 
out fair caufe, the evident advantage which a common exertion of 
fpirit would have given. We were about thirty, ftrong, and, to 
the fight, refolute good looking fellows ; all armed, except myfelf, 
with matchlocks or fide arms. On the enemies approach, our 
leader, a portly man with a large beard and fpreading muftachios, 
mounted on a curvetting ftccd, was (truck with a violent terror, 
which was inftantly communicated to the pnty. The moun- 
taineers failed not to augment the condonation, and, without ce- 
remony, proceeded to the ufual modes of plunder : Bur, fearful 
of the arrival of the kafilah, they were prevented from a total 
capture. Aware of the riik of this day's journey, I had concealed 



ray cafh in two long and narrow purfes, which, in the manner of 
garters, were tyed round my legs. This arrangement was fortu- 
nate, for the Afghans perceiving my reluctance to difmount, 
knocked me off the mule, and forcibly opened the different parts 
of my drefs j not finding any thing of value, they were proceeding 
to treat me with violence, when a Hindoo, of the family of the 
Dewan of Kafhmire, who had known me in that country, inter- 
pofed his good offices, and propofed a ranfom for my releafemcnt. 
This generous Hindoo, who I hope will undergo no further tranf- 
migration, unlefs he likes it, exerted fo much warmth in my behalf 
and fpoke fo urgently to thofe marauders, that one of them gave 
him a fevere blow on the face. He did not, however defift, but 
by an active perfeverance, fupported by a fmall fum of money, he 
accompliftied his purpofe. At the clofe of this affair, I had 
mounted ray mule and was rejoicing at the efcape, when I received 
a fmart blow on my back ; and turning about, an Afghan, who 
had taken this mode of attracting my notice, told me, with an ex- 
ulting laugh, that our party might now move on, as the kafilah 
was in fight, but directed us, if the fafety of our lives was regar- 
ded, not to join it until it mould have pafled the place of action. 
This injunction was fpeedily obeyed by me and fome others ; but 
our doughty commander, feeing the near profpect of relief, began 
to utter many bold words, and fliew a difpofition of recovering 
his property and honor by an aflault of the Afghans ; who roufed, 
at the menace, though the kafilah was clofe at hand, drew their. 


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daggers and advanced their fliields, daring him to battle and to 
fight for what he had loft. The cautious officer, again, qualified 
his wrath ; but he reprobated them in very fpirited language, and 
denounced a fevere vengeance on fome fitter occafion. In the lat- 
ter part of the journey, an Hindoo, who had gone about a quarter 
of a mile from the party, was plundered of property to the amount 
of four hundred rupees, by a fmall body of thefe robbers who had 
made a fudden defcent from the hills, and before affiftance could 
be given, fecured the booty. It was with much pleafure, after the 
peril and toil of the day, I faw the Kabul river and the fmall vil- 
lage of Dickah, where we halted. The ftage from Timrdod to 
Dickah, ufually called the Hyber-pafs, being the only one in which 
much danger is to be apprehended from banditti, the officer of the 
ffcort gave orders to his party to quit the kafilah, and march early 
on the next morning. This opportunity, at once offering fafety 
and expedition, was not to be foregone; yet, the muleteer was 
with great difficulty perfuaded to embrace it, and but for the in- 
terference of Noor Mahomed, who was obliged to beat him into 
compliance, I muft have attended the tedious progrefs of the ka- 
filah. Eefore I quit this ftation it is necefTary to lay before you a 
brief account of the tribe of Afghans, through whofe diftrict wc 
had now pafTed. 

You will naturally be furprized, that a fmall body of people 
rcfiding near the capital of an extenfive empire, mould not have 
been reftraincd from infefting one of its molt public roads. The 
Voi.. II. H lawlefs 


lawlefs conduft of this (eft of Afghans, who arc known in thii 
country by the name of Hybers, originates chiefly in the imbe- 
cility of Timur Shah's government, and his want of military 
fpirit. They are ftrongly aided alfo in the purfuit of a free- 
booting life, by the fituation of their country, which forms a 
chain of rocky mountains, whofe fcanty flips of valley afford 
but the coarfeft provifion for human wants. This rude race of 
men have made fo flow a progrefs in civilization, that the 
greateft part of them, like the ftoried Troglodites of old, dwell 
in caves, or rather in the fiflurcs of rocks. Though profefling 
the Mahometan religion, they are little more verfed in it than 
believing Mahomet to be their prophet, that he had four dif- 
tinguiflied friends, and that the Perfians, with the whole feft 
of Ali, are a mifcreant race of infidels. The Hyber dialed* is 
founded on the common language of the Afghans, but harflily 
guttural, and is ill underftood by the adjacent tribes. Timur 
Shah, who ufed formerly to pafs the winter at Pefliour, which 
is there much milder than at Kabul, never patted through the 
territory of the Hybers, without their attacking his advanced 
or rear guard. An Armenian, with whom I was acquainted 
in travelling from Moultan towards Kabul, arrived at Pefliour, 
where taking alarm at the perils of the Hyberrpafs, he re- 
turned to Moultan, a journey of three weeks, thence he proceeded 
to Kundahar, a month's journey, from which place it is a diftance 
•f fifteen days to Kabul ; making in all, a paffage of nine weeks, 


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which is ufually performed by the Hyber-track in eleven days. 
This fac"r, at the fame time that it marks the caution and patience 
of an Armenian, explains the dread entertained of the Hybers. 

On the a8th, before day break, having joined the party that 
had efcorted the kafilah, we left Dickah, and, at the diftance of 
feven codes, halted near the village of Biflbuly, to dry our bag- 
gage, which had been expofed all the morning to a heavy rain. 
In moving again, we experienced many obftacles from the ex- 
treme darknefs of the night, and the numerous currents of 
water, which fuddenly produced by the rains, poured from the 
hills with extreme impetuofity j carrying with them ftones of a 
vaft fize, whofo rolling noife refembled thunder. It was mid- 
night, the (ky was overcaft with black clouds, and the roaring 
of the torrents heard on ail fides, created in my mind a certain 
horror mingled with awe, and I was involuntarily led to con- 
fider this grand fcene of nature with fentimcnts of profound 

On approaching a rivulet, which had been greatly enlarged by 
the rain, oor chief difpatched firft, that (he might not be incom. 
moded by the crowd, one of his favourite women, who, though 
mounted on a ftrong horfe, had no looner entered the ftrcam, than 
fhe was fwept away by its force and drowned. This event occa- 
fioned an immediate halt, and very fcnfibly afflicted our leader, 
who threw himfelf on the ground, and loudly lamented the fate of 
his miftiefs. At day break, the body was found on the (hore, co- 
ll 2 vcred 


vcred with mud, and after interring it with fuch ceremonies as the 
occafion admitted, our party eroded the ftream, now reduced to a 
fmall fize. 

On the 29th, at Jillalabad,* twelve codes, formerly a town of 
great note, and though now much decayed, ft ill fupporting a mo- 
derate traffic. It has a public market, and the adjacent diftrict 
produces a coarfe fugar. Yefterday the country was open and 
fertile j to day the road led over a barren tract, interfperfed with 

On the 30th, at the village of Balabaugh, eight cofles. 

On the 31ft, at the village of Gundamouck, ten cofles; about 
three miles to the eaftward of Gundamouck, croffed a fmall ford- 
able river,f running to the fouthward or right, over which arc 
the remains of a bridge built of bricks. The air, hitherto hot. 
had affumed at this place a Hidden coldnefs j not effected by any 
change of weather, but agreeably to the obfervation of travellers, 
peculiar to the climate of this part of the country. The ftioitnefe 
of our ftay would not permit an inquiry into the caufe of this 
quick tranfition, nor could any of my aflbciates, though ufed to 
the road, give a rcafonable account of it. Paflengers, I believe, 
throughout Afia, make journies merely from motives of profit or 
conveniency, fometimes of religion. A defire of knowledge, or 

• The Attock river runs about two miles to the northward of the town, 
t I imagine it falls intoUe Attock river at fome doit diltaucc. 



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even pleafure, rarely canics them abroad ; and they move from 
•ne ftage to another, without deviating an unneccffaiy footftep. 
Yet they are minutely (killed in the rates of provifions at all the 
markets, and whether the place is a hot or a cold one, farther 
they know not, nor do they ever afk. Near the village of Gun - 
damouck is feen a white ftone, faid to refemble the head of an 
elephant, atid 1 believe, that which the Perfians term the Sung 
$yfFede,* The. air, in this quarter, muft have been ftrongly im- 
pregnated with nitrous particles, for all the expofed parts of my 
body became covered with a white fcaly fubftancc, of a (aline tafte, 
which in a (hort time excoriated the outer flcin. 

On the ift of Auguft, at Baracow, a fandy uninhabited valley, 
ten eoffes. The officer of the efcort, proceeding this day to Kabul 
with thole that were well mounted, our party was reduced to a 
(mail number. We remained, during the noon heat, at Juggid 
Ali, where I think there is only one houfe, which ftands under 
the (hade of a few trees, and where it is (aid, the wind con- 
tinues to blow with violence during the whole year. Its force 
did not abate during our ftay, and if fuch is its ufual rate, 
JEolus, had he lived in our day, would at leaft have chofen 
Juggid Ali for one of his country feats. Noor Mahomed> 
whom I fuppofe you have loft fight of, believing that my 
money was now expended, or that I would not advance more, 

• Signifying in the Perfic a white ftone. 



bad for fame time treated me with neglect, almoft infulr, and 
in defpite of his former affurance, that zealous Mahometan* 
were never abandoned, we fliould have felt extreme diltrels, had 
he not borrowed a little cafli from a horfc dealer, and I from 
the private fund. 

On the 2d of Auguft we commenced oor journey, that 
day a long one, at three o'clock in the morning, and lb amend- 
ing a high fteep hill, which forms one fide of the valley d 
Baracow, the tackle of my mule broke j when I, the animal 
and baggage, rolled rapidly to the bottom. In my way down, t 
roared out with vehemence for afliftance, but every perfon being 
engaged in more intereiYmg bufinefs, no notice was taken of 
my clamours. My fituation would have been very com fort left, 
had I not perceived Noor Mahomed palling clofe by me, whofo 
help I earneitly intreatecL After a long hefitation, and a hearty 
curfe which I bore with patience, he confented to fray, and having 
affifted in collecting my fcattered garments, and repairing the 
mule's tackle, we proceeded together. During a fmart debate, in 
which his illiberal conduct and my ill luck were keenly reprobated, 
it was found that we had ft rayed from the path . But the effect* 
of a mutual fear, foon abforbed the late grievance, and united 
our exertions in difcovcring the right path, which was found after 
much groping. 

Crossing a range of rocky hills, which extends with little 
intervention of valley for the fpace of about eight miles, we entered 

a wide 


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* wide plain well watered and interfperfed with walled villages. 
The Kabul river runs through this plain, over which, at the dif- 
tance of four or five miles to the fouthward of the city, is a bridge * 
built of bricks. On our approach to the capital, an afiive 
fecne of perfonal decoration took place, jet in a fafliion very dif- 
ferent from that of the beaus of Europe. Inftead of powdering 
and curling the hair of the head, a Mahometan is there clofe morn, 
and fo far from thinking that beauty is imparted by a fmooth 
chin, he meafures the comelineis of his countenance, even the 
extent of honour, by the length and breadth of his beard.-f* It is 
no uncommon oath in this country to fwear by the beard ; and to 
call a man bud reijb, or bad beard, is held a bitter reproach, but 
petit maitrcs are not wanting among the Mahometans, efpecially 
in the exhibition of the beard } and though they do not apply to 
k marechale powder or pomade divine, it is clipped into fome fa- 
vourite fhape with much nicety, and mould the natural hue be 
not liked, it is ftained with a mining black colour, j; which lafts a 
long time. Imagining from the behaviour of Noor Mahomed, 
that I mould not fee him again, and wiming to make a final trial 
of his difpofition, I defired him to fix fome period for the pay- 
ment of his debt, which a fair and very fhort account ftated at 

* Called Byramy. 

f The Pcrfians, Afghans, and moft of the natural Turks, encourage the growth 
•f the beard i while the Indian Monointtans, Fatans excepted, ordinarily (have it. 
J. This dye is compofcd of Indigo, and the leave* of the Ivony Qui*. 



five fliilhngs. He obferved with much indifference, that { the road 
was an imprpper place for the adjuftment of accounts, and that he 
would take fome future occafion for the purpofe. 

In the evening I arrived at Kabul, fifteen cofles, the capital of 
the Afghan empire } and, after a long fearch, found a Georgian, 
for whom I had brought a letter of introduction,' from his coun- 
tryman at Kaftimire having read the letter, he made me an offer 
of half his appartment, and fuch afliftance as a ftranger might 
need. This acceptable tender was embraced with little circum- 
locution, and I was immediately received into a mefs, which? 
then confifted of Bagdafir the Georgian, and the Armenian 
whom I mentioned to have made the circuitous route from Pe«. 
fhour to Kabul. My hoft refided in a karavanfera, once paid by 
foreign traders, and had pafled twenty years of his life at KabuL 
. My firft care was to difclofe to him the injured ftate of my 
bill } at which he fhook his head, obferving, that as no letter 
in it feemed legible, it was not to be expected men would come 
forward in a bufinefs, that would in any fhapc, take money 
from them. The Merchants of Kabul, he faid, differed much 
in their mode of dealing, from thofe of India, and with diffi- 
culty, were brought to difcharge payments demanded on the 
cleareft authority, much lefs on a plea fo equivocal as that of 
mine. The truth of this reafoning was on the next day fully 
proved, for not a merchant of the city, and all were applied to, 
would even attempt to decypher the paper, when he underftood it 


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contained an order of payment. This event fenfibly affected 
my future progrefs, and I feared would detain me at Kabul 
until clearer credentials were obtained. Another occurrence be- 
fell me at this time, of a much more trivial nature j but as it 
ferves to pourtray perhaps a national character, may deferve a 

The muleteer, who had accompanied me from Peflibur, 
charged me with having given him a counterfeit rupee on the 
road, and now required its exchange. He had before made 
known to me his fufpicion of this piece of money, which one 
of the paflengers had given him, and had folicited my inter- 
ference for redrefs. When I recounted this fact, reprobating alfo 
the lhamdefs fraudulency of the attempt, the boy, for he was 
not more than fixteen years of age, daringly told me to Ypare 
my words and pay the money, or he would prefer a double 
complaint again ft me, and make oath to the kazzi, that none 
of the mule-hire had been paid \ though him felt had witneflcd the 
advance of half the hire at Pefhour. His youthful appearance, 
and fo intrepid a declaration, united in ftriking me with horror, 
and I inftantly put my hand to my purfe to prevent his purpofe, 
when Bagdafir, who had heard our difcourfe, infilled that no 
money mould be paid without an order from the judge. They 
went to that officer's court, where the muleteer, without a wince, 
made oath to the truth of his demand, which was forthwith paid 
Vol,IL I by 


by Bagdafir, who returned eroding himfelf, and congratulated my 
eafy efcape from the clutches of a young incarnate devil. 

By fleeping in the open air I imagine, and on nitrous ground, 
a fever, accompanied with an ague, fcized me a few days after 
my arrival at Kabul, the effects of which were Angularly violent* 
The fever, during its continuance, caufed a delirious ftupefaction, 
and created an infatiable thirft. which frequently relieving by 
draughts of extremely cold water, it feemed at once to gufh from 
every pore, and drenched me in profufe perfpiration. When the 
fit of ague commenced, my bed-cloths, with thofe of Bagdafir, 
and all the horfe-covering that could be procured, were heaped on 
me, but to little purpofe ; for I lay in the ftate of the damned, if 
fuch can be formed by human idea, until the paroxyfm had 
wreaked its vengeance. My body was filled with fpots of a very 
bright colour, fhaded between purple and crimfon, which I fhould 
have beheld with pleafure, thinking that fuch eruption would 
dirainifli the difeafe, had not an Armenian pronounced them a 
fymptom of the plague. This opinion gave a common alarm > 
and though no alteration appeared in the conduct of Bagdafir, it 
operated ftrongly on the fears of my neighbours, and they were 
difpofed to exclude me from their quarter, when I confidently 
afferted that the fever of the plague always produced its crifis in 
three days. Seeing that I had endured feven, and preferved a brifk 
flow of fpirits, their apprehenfion was much allayed, and the 
fcheme of banifhment let afide. 

En DBA- 

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Endeavouring one day to look through the tube of my to- 
bacco-pipe with my right eye, the left being clofed, I perceived it 
to be wholly without fight. This was a mortifying event, and 
that my ills might be more grievous, I was afflicted with a fpitting 
of blood. Bagdafir now called in a doctor of phyfic, who after 
pronouncing me in a deplorable ftate, and that little fhort of a 
miracle could fave me, undertook the cure, through the medium 
of fome medicine only known, he faid, to himfelf, and which had 
never failed of fuccefe. Entertaining from the difcourfe of my 
phyfician, but a (lender opinion of his ability, I ufed, under dif- 
ferent pretences, to fend Bagdafir out of the room, and difpofed 
of the medicine where no injury could be done. The diforder 
having directed its full force againft me for the fpace of twenty 
days, began, as if wearied with the exertion, to abate, and in a 
fliort time it wholly ceafed, but my frame was fo fiiattered and my 
nerves fo much relaxed, that I could fcarcely crawl about, and the 
leaft noife produced a violent tremor. In the courfe of my illnefs 
I was vifited by many of the Armenians, and one of them, a zea- 
lous devotee, defired me to fwallow fome fmall rolls of paper, on 
which were written certain myfterious words, infallible, he faid, in 
their effects, upon the bodies of pious chriftians. 

I expressed my thanks to this dealer in fpells, and readily 
agreed to take his dofe, ftiould Bagdafir who was my abfolute di- 
rector, give afTcnt. On an inveftigation into their virtue, he per- 
mitted me, though with reluctance, for he abhorred the Armenian 

I 2 feci, 


left, to eat them, at the fame time exprefsing ftrong doubts of their 
efficacy. .But whether from not being a member of the orthodox 
faith, as the Armenian urged, or according to the Georgian, from 
the heretical preparation of the charm, I received no benefit, in- 
deed I grew daily worfe, as the ficknefs was then in its progreffive 
ft age. 

Observing on my arrival at Kabul, a common toleration of 
religion j that Chriftians, Hindoos and Jews, openly profefled 
their creed, and purfued their occupations without moleftation ; 
and aware alfo that the Malvometan character would deprive me 
of the advantage of Bagdafir's connection, 1 had informed hint 
that I was a native of Europe, returning from India, into my 
own country. At firft I defigned to take the name of a French- 
man, but the wandering temper of that people, who ftray into 
every corner of the earth, made me fear detection } and had I been 
hardy enough to become an Englifhman,. one of thofc who. have 
abforbed the Mahometan power in India, and in this country have 
obtained a fuperior military reputation, I mould perhaps at this 
day, have been a bombadier in the corps of Timur Shah's artillery. 
To avoid thefe rifques, I denominated myfelf a Spaniard. 

It was with much fatisfa&ion I {aw the road from Kabul to 
Perfia open, and a fair profpect of performing the journey into 
Europe, by the route which 1 had originally propofed. Two Ar- 
menian travellers, who had gone by fea from Aftracan to Ure 
Gunje, a Tartar ftation on one of the rivers at the head ofthe 



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Cafpian, and thence to Kabul, by the road of Bochara and Balk, 
were earneft in perfuading me to purfue their tract as the fliorteft 
and moll free from danger. Yet in this fcheme were fome eflcn- 
tial defects. The Perfian language, on which was founded my 
chief fupport, would in this route render me little ufe, I learned 
alfo that the winter of Bochara was fevere and long, that the Ure 
Cunje river, continued frozen until the month of March, and that 
no Ruffian veffcl came there before May; though a journey from 
Kabul to the northern more of the Cafpian, by the way of Tar- 
tary, might be performed in two months and a half, yet by 
fcrinding at Bochara, and the eventual delays of procuring a 
paflagc by fea, it did not feem probable that I fliould reach 
Aftracan before the enfuing June. This reafon, with the dif- 
like of vifiting a country now barren of events or of any grand 
object of curiofity, determined me to enter Perfia, where a 
knowledge of the language would affift in extending refearch,. 
as well as combat with more probable fuccefs, the difficulties 
incident to my fituation. 

Having too fully, 1 fear, expatiated on perfonal concerns, I 
will now purfue the more ufeful tendency of this letter, and 
inform you that Kabul, the refidence of Timur Shah and the 
capital of his dominion, is a walled city of about a mile and 
a half in circumference, and. fituated on the eaftern fide of a 
range of two united hills, describing generally the figure of a 
femicirclc. The fortification, which is of a fimple conftruftion, 

* * * • ■ m m' 



with fcarcely a ditch, and the houfes built of rough ftones, 
clay, and unburncd bricks, exhibit a mean appearance, and are 
ill fuited to the grandeur which I expected to fee in the capital 
of a great empire. But the Afghans are a rude unlettered 
people, and their chiefs have little propenfity to the refinements 
of life, which indeed their country is ill qualified to gratify. 

From the Indus to the weftcrn limit of this extenfive ter- 
ritory, there is an invariable deficiency of wood; infomuch, 
that the lower clafs of people in the northern quarter, fufter 
as much, perhaps from a want of fuel in the winter feafon, as 
thofe of other countries would do from a fcarcity of pro* 
vifions. <4 HMRW 

Balau Sir, the name of the Shah's palace, where alfothe 
houfhold fcrvants, guards, and the Haves are lodged, (lands on 
a rifing ground in the eaftern quarter of the city, and exhibits 
but a (lender teftimony of the dignity of its matter. Having no* 
ticed what has not been done to decorate Kabul, I muft not omit 
to mention the works of Ali Murdan Khan. This omrah, who 
held an eminent ftation in the fervice of Jehanguir, erected, 
nearly in the centre of the city, four fpacious bazaars, or 
market places in a line, which confift of a range of apartments 
on each fide of two floors, the lower appropriated to merchants, 
and that above to private ufe. The intermediate fpace between 
the ranges, is covered by an arched roof, and each bazaar is 
feparated by an open fquare, which was fupplicd with fbun- 


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tains, but now choakcd with filth or occupied by the meaneft order 
of mechanics. Ali Murdan has left behind him many monuments 
of liberality and tafte ; the grandeft, though now in ruins, is feen 
in the vicinity of Dehli, and difplays at once a defign, ufeful and 

During the fplendid aera of Dehli, when it covered accord- 
ing to popular tradition, a fpace of twenty miles, the inhabi- 
tants who refided at a diftance from the Jumna, which fkirted 
only one of its angles, experienced much difficulty in procuring 
river water, that of the wells not being efteemed Co falubrious. 
Ali Murdan, defirous of relieving this common grievance, furveyed 
the land to the weftward, and faw that a fluke, opened from the 
Jumna, where that river approaches Karnal, would from the de- 
clivity of the ground, introduce water into the back part of the 
city and conduct it through all the quarters. The defign was put 
in execution, and to reward his fuccefs and preferve the work in 
good condition, Ali Murdan was veiled with the privilege of levy- 
ing a certain tax, on thofe houfes which enjoyed the ufes of the 
canal. Water was conveyed by this branch of the Jumna, form- 
ing a diftance of more than one hundred miles and afford- 
ed a commodious fupply to all the inhabitants ; nor, did the 
canal fall into decay, until the period of the Perfian and Afghan 
invafions. Ali Murdan, who in his tafte and difpofition would 
not have difgraeed the Roman Lucullus, bcftowed on the public 
numerous edifices and gardens $ one of which thickly (haded with 



cyprefs trees, ftands in the -environs of Pefhour, and another 'af 
Nimlah, a fmall village lying about eighty miles to the fouth-caft 
of Kabul, on the I'elhour road. > 

A respkct for the memory of this omrah has, perhaps led 
me into too wide a deviation from which I will now return, and 
inform you that the diftricts of Kabul abound in excellent provi- 
fions, and that its market is arranged in a neater manner and more 
like that of an European town, than any I have feen in Afia. The 
fruits are of a good kind and in great plenty, as apples, pears, 
peaches, pomegranates and a variety of grapes. 

This quarter of Afghani it an, poffefiing but few Indian produc- 
tions, receive fugars and cotton cloths, chiefly from Pelhour, whi- 
ther it fends iron, leather and tobacco. To Kandahar it exports 
iron, leather and lamp oil, whence the* turns are made in fun- 
dry manufactures of Perfia and Europe, with a large fupply of 
melons of an excellent fort. The Tartars of Bochara, bring to 
Kabul the horfes of Turkiftan, furs and hides, the latter refembling 
thofe in Europe, called Bulgar, the amount of which is applied 
to the purchafc of Indigo, and other commodities of India. 

The adjacent parts of Ufljeck Tartary of which Balk* is the 
capital, hold a fpecies of dependency on Timur Shah and maintain 
a common intercourfe with Kabul. I have feen the great bazaar, 
crowded with Ufbecks, who have the fame caft of features as the 

• This city is about two hundred miles to the north-weft of Kabul. 


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Chinefc and Malays, but more harfti. Among the foreign na^ 
tions who frequent this city, the Hindoos, chiefly of Pefliour, 
contribute more than any other to enrich it, by a fuperior in- 
duftry and knowledge of commerce ; and they enjoy under the 
Afghan government, a liberty and protection, little fliort of that 
experienced by the inhabitants of our Indian pofleflions. The 
benefits derived by a ftate from the refidence of any clafs of people, 
ufually enfure to them a fecurity of perfon and property ; but the 
Hindoos of Kabul are indebted, I believe, for fpecial indulgence to 
one of their own feet, who controuls the revenues of the Shah, 
and ftands high in favour. The environs of Kabul are, chiefly 
occupied by garden grounds, and watered by numerous ftreams ; 
the largeft running through the city, over which is a fmall bridge,* 
affords a plentiful fupply of falubrious water. 

Kabul as has been before noticed, ftands near the foot of two 
conjoined hills, whofe length has nearly an eaft and weft direction. 
Towards the bafc of the eallern ftands, on a flat projection, a for- 
tified palace, which was formerly the habitation of the governors 
of the city ; but it has been converted by Timur Shah into a 
ftate prifon, where the brothers of this prince and other branches 
of his family are kept in confinement. Above this building is 
fecn a fmall tower on a peak, whence the ground rifcs to a 
conftdcrable height, and is united by a neck, of lower land to the 

• Called I have fince been infcrmeJ ihe Pool Miftan. 

Vol. II. K . othci 


other hilL From the peak, a ftone wall extends over the fummits 
of the two hills, and is terminated at the bottom of the wefter- 
moft by an ordinary redoubt. 

The Afghans are the indigenous poflefibrs of a tract of coun-' 
*try, which ftretches from the mountains of Tartary to certain 
parts of the gulf of Cambay and Perfia ; and from the Indus 
to the confines of Perfia. The inhabitants of this wide domain, 
have no written character and fpeak a language peculiar to them- 
felves. They are a robuft, hardy race of men, and being gene- 
rally addicted to a date of predatory warfare, their manners 
largely partake of a barbarous infolence, and they avow a fixed 
contempt for the occupations of civil life. Though in fome of our 
hiftories of Afia, the natives of Afghaniftan are denominated Tar- 
tars, I am prompted to fay, that they bear no refemblance to thofo 
people, either in their perfons, manners, or language. 

Certain territories of Afghaniftan, were conquered in the 
ninth century by the khans of Bochara, of the Samani race, and 
annexed to the Tartar principality of Khorafan, from whence 
a fubordinate chief was deputed to govern at Guizni. But it does 
not appear that the northern quarter of the country was fubdued 
until the reign of Mahmoud,* the fecond prince of the Giznavi 
dynafty, who compleated the conqueft of Afghaniftan. No fub- 
ftantial tradition of the Afghans or the ftate of their country is 

» He reign«d in the eleventh ccntnry 


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found on record, until the year of the chriftian aera, 997, when 
Sabu&agi, a Tartar officer, in the fervice of the chief of Kho- 
rafan, who was fuhjeft at that period to Munfur at Samani,* 
the great khan of Bochara, having at his matter's death, fuc- 
ceeeded to the territory, renounced the Tartar vaflalage, and ex- 
tending his conqucfts to Afghaniftan, made Ghizni the capitat 
of his empire. 

The Ghiznavi dominion, which involved a large portion of 
Perfia and Hindoftan, acquired chiefly by the arms of Mahmoud, 
the fon of Sabu£tagi, flouriflied for the fpace of two hundred 
and feven years, when it was wreftcd from Kufro, the laft of 
the race of Sabuctagi, by the Afghan Mohomed Ghoii.f This 
prince bequeathed to Eldoze, a favorite (lave, his pofTeflions weft 
of the Indus, which wer« quickly overrun by a Perfian prince of 
Kharifm, whofe fucccflbr Tillal-ud-Dein, was compelled to fly 
before the victorious fword of Zinzis.i 

From the period of that revolution, till the invafion of Timur 
Beg, the hiftory of the Afghans is immerfed in general obfeurity j 
and little fatisfa&ory knowledge of their government has been com- 
municated to us, except by Ferifhta, who fays that in the year 
1251, Mahmoud, a Patan, king of Dehli, drove the Moghul Tar- 

• The fifth prince of that drnafty. 

+ So called from Ghor a diftridl or principal town, in the northern town in the 
northern part of Afghaniftan. 

% Thi$ event happened about the year ia+2. 

K 2 tars 


tars from Ghizni, and annexed it to the empire of Hindoftan. It 
is probable, that it continued fubject to the dominion of Delhi, 
until the expedition of Timur's into India, when the northern 
quarter of Afghaniftan became a Tartar province. 

As the great empire of Tartary fell into rapid decay on the 
death of Timur, and no relation being given of the fubfequenfc 
exiftence of a Tartar government in Afghaniftan, we may infer 
that it was ruled by its national chiefs until the year 1506, at 
which period, Baber, previoufly to his conqueft of Hindoftan, feized 
on Kabul and Ghieni, which occafionally with Kandahar, were 
held by his pofterity for the fpace of two hundred and thirty one 
years, when Nadir Shah annexed them to the dominion of Perfia. 

In arranging thofc heads of Afghan hiftory, it may not be fu- 
perfluous to note, that Malimoud Ghori, bequeathed his territory 
caft of the Indus to a flave, whom he had adopted, named Kultub 
Ul Dein, the firft Afghan or Patan* king of Dehli, from whom 
a fucceflion of princes of the fame nation, continued to reign for 
near three hundred years, and ended in Ibraham, of the houfe of 
Lodi ; who was flain in battle by Baber. The materials' of thi» 
fketch, which are taken from Shirrifud Dein's memoirs of Timur, 
Dovve's Hiftory of Hindoftan, and private defultory remarks, will 
not, I fear, communicate much ufeful information. For the went 

• The race of Afghans are commonly Lnown in India by the name of PaUns, the 
meaning or etymology of which defignation does not fecru to be afecrtained. 


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indeed of any native record, and the fuperficial manner in which 
the fubjecr. has been treated by foreign writers, little fubftantial 
matter can now exift for the conftru&ion of the hiftory of the 
Afghans. Yet the lofs is the* more eafily confoled, when it is 
confidered, that little inftru&ion or pleafure can arife to the mind, 
from reviewing the actions of a race of men enveloped in favage 
ignorance, and fiigmatifed even by the fierce Tartars for their 
cruelty and rapine. 

The Afghans received the religion of Mahomet from their 
Tartar conquerors, and like them profefling the Sooni creed, are 
avowed enemies to the Schias, or the Sectaries of Ali. Though 
many of the tribes mud have been converted at the period of the 
Ghizni dynafty, it is feen that Timur encountered a fierce body of 
this nation, whom he denominated infidels. At this day, the Afghans 
are efleemed the leaft correct of the Mahometans in religious obfer- 
varices ; and few of them are converfant in foreign letters. Their 
common drefs confifts of a (hut, which falls over the upper part of 
long and narrow trowfcrs j a woollen veft, fitted clofelv to the body, 
and leaching to the mid-leg, and a high turned up c»p, of broad 
cloth or cotton, ufually of one colour, and of a conic form; with 
two fmall parallel flits in the upper edge of its facing. Bread of 
wheat and barley, milk, butter and chccGr, compofe the common diet, 
of the Afghans i they aifo, in the winter teafbn and on a journey,,, 
make frujumt ufe of a food called Croat) which is curdled milk, 
formed into fmall bails, hardened either bv the heat of the fun or 
. • . : fire; 

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fire this, wlien diffolved in warm water and mixed with bread, be- 
comes equally favoury and nouriflnng. Their butter and chcefe, 
are invariably made of the milk of (heep, which in this country, is 
faid to be better adapted to the purpofe than that of Kine. The 
cheefe I thought of a good quality, though this opinion might have 
arifen from my long ufage to a courfe of (lender diet. 

The cuftoms of the Afghans, agreeably to the curfory obfer- 
vations I made, feem in all the greater lines, fimilar to thofc of 
other Mahometan nations ; with that difference which necefiarily 
arifcs from climate, and from the difpofition of a rude and polite 
people. Their women are concealed, though not in a very rigid 
manner ; nor are they fo much devoted to the pleafures of the 
haram, as the Indians, Perfians, or Turks. They avow an abhor- 
rence of that unnatural paffion to which many of the Mahometan 
feels are adicled ■, and the perpetrators are puniflied with feverity. 

The government of the Afghans, muft ever receive a weighty 
bias from the genius of their ruler, and the degree of authority he 
may poffefs. But when not conftrained, as in the prefent reign, 
by fome extraordinary power or capacity of the prince, they dif- 
perfc into focieties, and are guided by the ruder principles of a 
feudal conftitution. Conformably to this fyftem, the different 
chieftains ufually rcfide in fortified villages, where they exercife an 
acknowledged, though a moderate fway over their vaffals, and yield 
a carelefs obedience to the orders of government. Rarely any 
appeal is made to the head of the ftate, except in cafes which may 


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involve a common danger ; when I have feen the authority of the 
Shah interpofcd with fuccefs. 

The land-holders are afiefled, according to their capacity, in 
a ftipulatcd Aim, which is paid into the public treafury ; but as it 
is known that the demand of a large tax would be refilled, the go- 
vernment is temperate and lenient in its treatment of the native 
Afghan fubje&s. 

The armies of the empire are compofed of a diverfity of na- 
tions ; but the belt troops are drawn from the Afghan diftri&s ; 
each of which, on the event of fervice, furnifh a ftated quota at 
a low rate, and look for a greater reward in chance of war. The 
cities and towns are chiefly inhabited by Hindoos and Mahometans 
of the Punjab, who were eftabliflied by the former princes of Hin- 
doftan, to introduce commerce and civilization into their wefternr 
provinces j many families of Tartar and Perfian extraction are 
alfo difperfed through different parts of Afghanistan. The latter 
are denominated Parfewauns, the other Moguls ;* but they have 
both adopted the ufe of the Perfian language } and it may not be 
fuperfluous to obferve, that the Tartar f conquerors of India, a 
defcendant of whom ftill fits on the throne of Dehli, made the 
Perfian character and language the common medium of record and 

* The traders in bo r lis and fruits, who make annual joornies Into India, are chiefly 
ef this joint chfs 

t The Turkifh is the vcrnacubr language of that region of Tartary, which gave 
birth to the race of Timur. 



oorrefpondencc, throughout their dominion ; an ufage at this day 
preferved in all the Mahometan ftates of Hindoftan. 

To throw fome light on the «nodern hiftory of Afghanistan, it 
is necefTary to defcribe fome events which were produced in 
that quarter and in Perfia, previoufly to the invafion of Nadir- 

About the year 1720, an army of Afghans, commanded by 
Mahmud, the fon of Meervais, a chieftain of Kandahar, invaded 
Perfia, and after a feries of fuccefles, he became poflefied of Ifpa- 
han, the fultan Ilufieyn with all his fons, except Thamas Mirza, 
who made his efcape, were made prifoners. Mahmud held pof- 
leflion of the capital and the fouthcrn provinces until his death, 
when the fucceflion devolved on Afliruff, an Afghan of the fame 
tribe, who in the year 1730, continued to exercife a fovereign » 
power in the interior parts of the country. About this period, 
Thamas Mirza, who had fled from the Afghan arms, raifed a body 
of military adherents, and ultimately aided by the prowefs of 
Nadir his principle officer, made a vigorous attack upon the Af- 
ghan ufurper Afliruff maintained fome obftinate conflicts with 
the Peifian army, which was wholly commanded by Nadir, the 
molt intrepid and fuccefsful ibldier of the earl j but he was com- 
pelled to yield to the fupcrior genius of his enemy, and in retiring 
towards Kandahar with not more than a hundred men, he was at- 
tacked by a party of his marauding countrymen, and cut off after 
a defperatc defence. 

A pow- 

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A powerful feet of Afghans, denominated Abdali, encou- 
raged by the diftracled ftate of Perfia, had feized on Herat,* a large 
fprtified city in Khorafan, and were preparing to reduce the pro* 
vince, when they were encountered by Nadir, who totally routed 
their army ; fifteen thoufand, it is faid, being killed and wounded, 
and five thoufand made prifoners. Having recovered the territo- 
ries, which the Turks and Ruffians had difmembered from Perfia 
during the weak reign of Hufleyn, and expelled the Afghans, 
Nadir Shah depofed Thamas, and entering Afghaniftan in the 
year 1737 with a large army, laid fiege to the ftrong fortrefs of 
Kandahar, which was at that time held by Hufleyn Khan, an in- 
dependant Afghan chief. The exertions of this officer, aided by 
the natural advantages of his fituation, detained the Perfian in 
the vicinity of Kandahar, for the fpace of eighteen months. At 
the furrender of the fortrefs and other adjacent ftrong holds, Nadir 
made fo temperate a ufe of his victory, that about four thoufand 
Afghans, commanded by two of the officers of Hufleyn, were in- 
duced to join his army ; and it is mentioned that thefe troops, 
during the Indian expedition, rendered him effential fervice. 

In the annals of that period, I have made diligent fearch for 
the name of Abdali Ahmed Khan, the founder of the modern em- 
pire of Afghaniftan ; but I have not been able to procure any ac- 
curate information of his origin or military progrefs, until he 

• Suppofcd to be Aria of the ancicntt. 
Vol. IL L flatted 


ftartcd forth with fo brilliant a fuccefs at the death of Nadir Shah. 
That lie was an Afghan there is no doubt, as the fact is fully 
proved in the perfon of his fon Timur Shah ; yet from Dowe's 
hiftory, he has been brought into our notice by the name of the 
Perfian Abdalli } by various records and oral tradition of the life 
of Nadir Shah, it is feen that he maintained a party of Afghans 
in his fcrvicc, and having received in the latter period of his reign, 
a general teftimony of the difaffeclion and meditated treachery of 
his Perfian officers, he refolved to reduce them to obedience, or 
cut them off by the afliftance of his foreign Troops $ among whom, 
the Afghans, then, commanded by Ahmed Khan, were diftin- 
guiflied by pre-eminent marks of favor. 

The afiaflination of Nadir, was immediately followed by a 
furious attack on the Afghan troops, confuting of four or five 
thoufand men i but their intrepid chief, though aflailed by the 
whole Perfian army, effected a fafe retreat into his own country, 
where, feizing on a large treafure which the governor of Kabul, 
not yet apprized of the fate of Nadir, had difpatched to the Per- 
fian camp, and raifing a numerous force, he was acknowledged 
the fovereign of the Afghan territories, by the title of Ahmed 
Shah. After eftablifliing his authority at home, he penetrated 
into the northern quarters of India, which felt the force of his 
arm, and long groaned under the Afghan defolation. 

Ahmed Shah having run through a long and arduous mili- 
tary carreer, and acquired even the character of a temperate and 


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juft prince, died in the year 1773, in the vicinity of the new city of 
Kandahar,* which he had defigned to be the capital of Afghaniftan. 
This prince was fucceeded by his fon Timur, who keeps his court in 
the city of Kabul ; to preferve the foreign pofleflions of his father, 
he made in the firft part of his reign, fome defultory expeditions 
into India j but on the iflue of an unfuccefsful campaign with the 
Sicques, he was compelled to rclinquifti the whole of the Punjab 
territory. At this day he retains, on the eaft fide of the Indus, 
the principality of Kafhmire, the diftrict of Attock, with fome 
fcattered divifions of Moultan, including the city and the territory 
of Scind. Yet Timur Shah derives but few real advantages from 
fiis Indian domain. Scind at the period of my journey, was in a 
degree difmembered from his empire ; no revenue had been remit- 
ted to Kabul for the fpace of two years, or any meafure adopted 
to enforce obedience. And the governor of Moultan, confiding 
on his remote diftance from the empire and the inactive difpofition, 
of the prince, {hews only that attention to the orders of govern- 
ment, which is mod accordant with his purpofes. From this out- 
line you will perceive, that the Afghan dominion in India, does 
not ftand on a flourishing ground that under the aufpices of 
Timur, few marks of its extenfion are evinced j or that it im- 
parts any leading influence in the affairs of Ilindoftan. 

• Nadir Shah deftroyed the old fortrefs of Kandahar, which flood on the top of a 
high rocky hill, and founded on a contiguous plain, a city entitled Nadirabad ; it was 
completed by Ahmed Shah, and is now only known by the name of Kandahar. 

L 2 Rumours 


Rumours wafted from the court of Dehli, have occafionally 
agitated our quarter of India, and taught us to believe that Timur 
with a mighty hoft, had crofled l he Indus, and was making rapid 
marches to Dehli, to reftore tlx: loft authority of the Moghul 
empire. But this is an empty tale, framed to raife the fpirits 
of a decaying drooping court, or amufc the dreaming politicians 
of the day. It is indeed, fo oppofite to the truth, that the Af- 
ghan prince, inftcad of urging a foreign enterprize,. feems afraid 
to move from his capital.* At this time a common outcry of 
the foldiery prevails againft the Shah, for a large failure of mir 
litary payments ; and it appears that fince the year 1780, when 
he vifited Pefhour, where he was treacheroufly attacked by a 
party of difaffefted Afghans^ he has fliewn no defire of leaying 

* Since that period Timur Sruh, has appeared in the field and proceeded to the pro- 
vince of Moultan ; but his operations, futile and indeciflve, have terminated after much 
ncgociation and threat, in a manifeft incapacity to complete the reduction of a nominal 
tributary } and having diflblved the charm that popular opinion had imp rc fled on hi» 
name, he returned inglorioufly into his own country. 

Nott hj tbt Editors. 

>\ Some recenr advices from India mention, that in the autumn of 1796, Zetnaun 
Shah, the fucccflor of Timur, had invaded the Punjab, and having completely routed 
the forces of the Sicques, had gained poflefflon of Lahore ; but was foon after ro> 
called from thence to Kandahar by a rebellion excited there, during his abfence, *>y a 
difcontented chief, named Morad Khan. Thcfc accounts add that he was fuppofed to 
have fupprcflcd this infurrc&ion, and to be preparing to re-enter India with a very 
cordidcrable armj« 


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Exclusive of his Afghan and Indian dominions, Timur 
Shah is poflcffed of a large d'tvifion of Khorafan, which taking 
in the city of Herat, extends on the north to the vicinity of 
Nifliabor and Turfhifh, and on the fouth to the lefler Irak. 
This prince, whom I have feen, is about forty fix years of age, 
his perfon is above the middle fize and rather corpulent ; and, for 
a native of Afghaniftan, is complexion is dark. In token of impe- 
rial dignity, he wears on days of ceremony, a liigh cap of black 
velvet, with a top of a quadrangular form. 

From a want of vigor in the government, a thin population, 
and the averfion of the Afghans to civil occupations the reve- 
nue of Timur Shah bears an inadequate proportion to the ex- 
tent of his dominion. In Mr. Dowe's Hiftory of Hindoltan, it 
is faid that Ahmed Shah pofiefled a revenue of three millions 
fterhng, and maintained a (landing body of one hundred thoufand 
cavalry. If fuch was the flare of that prince's power and refources, 
it hath greatly decreafed in the reign of his fucceflbr; whofc 
whole force according to the information I procured in the country, 
does not exceed thirty thoufand men, or his revenue a million 
of our money. , . 

Cavalry conftitutes the chief military flxength of Afghan- 
iftan, which as well from its own diftricls, as its contiguity 
to Tartary and Perfia, procures good horfes,* at a moderate rate. 

' . >- - -. . . 

• A ferviccablc horfe is procured at Kabul, from five to Cx pounds fterling. 

A corps 


A corps of infantry armed with matchlocks, composes alfo a part 
of the Afghan army ; but, as in countries where cavalry is formed 
of the higher claffcs of the people and denominates military honor 
and rank, this body is held in low account, and is little fupe- 
rior to the undifciplined foldiery of India; and the Afghan ar- 
tillery, may without depreciating it, be eftimated by the feme fcale 
of comparifon. Certain of the brother! of Timur Shah have 
raifed occafional commotions in the government, and one of them 
named Sicunder, was in open rebellion, but it was quelled 
without producing any violent effect. This prince who hitherto 
experiences the obedience and filial duty of his own family, has 
appointed two of his fons, grown to manhood, to the feparate 
charge of Kandahar and Herat ; both of them live in harmony 
with their father and are efteemed by the people. 

The remains of a colony of Armenians, which Nadir Shah 
had captured in his Turkilh war, and eftabliflied in the nor- 
thern parts of Perfia, whence it was removed by Ahmed Shah 
into Afghaniftan, arc wow refiding at Kabul. They intermarry 
with their own women and arc allowed the free ufe of the 
chriftian religion, which is adminiftered by a national prieft. 
They were attached to the body-guard of the late Shah, whom 
they attended in his various expeditions ; and thofe who fur- 
"vived, amounting to about one hundred, were fomctime cm- 
ployed by Timur in the like capacity ; but, fince this prince 
has perfonally relinquiflied the purfuits of a military life, and 


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neglected the maintenance of his army, the Armenians have 
fallen into great penury. They refide with their families 
in the precincts of the Balau Sir, and are permitted within a 
prefcribed limit, to exercife difcretionary occupations. Yet with 
all the induftry which the tribe fo abundantly poflefles, they 
earn but a fcanty pittance. In defpite of this grievance of the 
gloomy forrow preficd on them by poverty, by a condition of 
bondage, to which on this fide of mortality, the moft fanguine 
hope can fix no termination, they evince an unremitting activity 
in propagating their fpecies : and would feem determined to entail 
on their race, an equal portion of that mifery, which has fo 
largely fallen to their lot. 

From what has been already noticed, it were almofl fuper- 
fluous to fay that Timur Shah poflefles little enterprize or vigor 
of mind. For the laft feven years, he has /hewn; little inclina- 
tion to military action, or the aggrandifement of his Empire. It 
is true, that allured by the hope of acquiring an eafy pofTeflion 
of one of the beft cities, now remainining in Perfia, he fent a 
body of troops to befiege Mufchid, the capital of Khora- 
fan } but, the wretched equipment of his army and the flow pro- 
grefs of the fiege, which was commenced in the preceding year, 
equally fhew a want of fpirit and ability. 

The Afghan government, when viewed as ftanding on a ge- 
neral bafis of defpotifm, and compared with that of other Afiatic 
ftates, is not pregnant with injuftice or cruelty. Its edicts are 


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felddm accompanied with WoodflwU nor is it inimical to any feci 
of ftrangers. The foreign and native merchants, enjoy at Kabul 
an ample protection, and maintain their rights with a fpirit, 
rarely feen in a Mahometan country. Capital punifhments are 
feldom inflicted, and though the kinfmen of the Prince have 
formed frequent confpiracies againft the ftate, his hands arc not 
Gained with the blood of his family. Such are the virtues of Ti- 
mur Shah, which were exemplified in various inftances, during my 
refidencc at his capital. The ruling vice of this prince is avarice ; 
from a dread of the fierce and untraceable fpirit of the Afghans, 
its effects arc not feverely felt in the colle&ion of the territorial 
revenue but it prefles hard on the foldiery and houfhold fervants ; 
on artificers, and on thofe merchants who unwarily vend their 
wares to the court without prompt payment. The fa&s, however 
defultory, that have been adduced, do not warrant the opinion 
that Timur Shah is an object of dread to the bordering ftates, or 
that he is juftly entitled, the comet of the eaft, who we have been 
taught to believe, will at fome unexpected moment, (hoot acrofs 
the Indus and the Ganges, and confume even our remote province 
of Bengal. 

The chief ftrength of the Afghan prince, I prefume to fay, is 
derived from the weaknefs and difcord of his neighbours. Were 
the Sicque chiefs not more apprehenfive of a domeftic increafing 
influence, than defirous of fubduing a conftitutional enemy, they 
would, it may be fairly inferred, fpeedily extinguish the Afghan 


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government in India ; and fliould the Perfian force be thrown into 
a body, under the conduct of an able leader, it is not only pro- 
bable, that the difmembered divifion of Khorafan would revert to 
its ancient poflefibrs, but that the Afghans would again feel a 
foreign yoke.— With an earneft apology for this long letter, I 


Yours, &c. 

Vol. II. M LET- 

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HAVING in vain endeavoured to procure 
payment of my defaced bill, I fold it at half price to Bagdafir, 
my Georgian hoft, who agreed to abide by the chance of ob- 
taining the full amount. God forgive me for doubting the in- 
tegrity of my Chriftian hoft ; but, fome obfeure parts of the 
negotiation, and the exorbitant prices, charged upon fundry ar- 
ticles which I purchafed from him, induced me to believe, that 
he had not played me fair. To throw rafli blame on a man, 
who had rendered me fuch efiential offices of humanity, and who, 
is cut off from every help of vindication, were a breach of one 
of the grand bonds of focicty. Nor had this fufpicion been com- 
municated, did it not lead to fubftantiate an obfervation I have 
often made; that a man, though devoted to the ftrift obfer- 
vance of the minuted ceremony of his religion, with a mind of- 
tenfibly fixed on objects lying beyond mortality, who, like the 
Georgian, loudly chants his morning and evening prayers, and on 
his beads, numbers a long lift of martyred faints, (hall at the 

M 2 fame 


fame time, eagerly grafp at every advantage, which our world 
holds out to him j nor (hall he give even farthings to the poor. 
This covering has happily in the civilized world, become thread- 
bare and flimfy, and except in fanatic conventicles, is feldom exhi- 
bited with fuccefs. 

Having made the requifite preparations for my journey, 
and hired one fide of a camel, on which a pannier was fufpended 
for my accommodation, 1 joined a party proceeding to Kandahar. 

On the firft September, at Killah Kazzee, the remains of a 
fort, three furfungs* diftant from Kabul. This being a kafilah of 
camels, which in Afghaniftan and Perfia, are ufually driven in the 
night, that the heat of the day and the effects of thirft, may be lef9 
felt, we departed on the evening of the 2ad, and early next mor- 
ning halted on a barren plain, five furfungs. The road lay 
through fcattered hills of a moderate height, and a country thinly 

It is necefTary to inform you, that I now appeared in the cha- 
racter of a Chriftian, conformably to the counfel of Bagdafir, who 
had confidently allured me that no rifque would be incurred under 
fuch defcription ; and, he expatiated alfo on the grievous fin of 
throwing out any falfe colours on the fcorc of religion. But it 

* Throughout this quarter of Afghaniftan and all the dominion of Perfia, tht 
land mcafurcmcnt is calculated by furfungs , . which may be roundly computed, at four 
Engiilo miles. In fome of the ancient authors, this meaftircment is termed paralang, 
agreeably to tbe alphabet of the old Perfjc in which the letter F is not contained. 


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was foon feen that the exchange involved a multiplicity of troubles. 
Never perhaps, did the meek and patient member of primitive 
Chriftianity fuffer, among the Gentiles, greater indignity or more 
bitter reproach j martyrdom only was withheld ; and that ex- 
tremity of Chriftian honor, I was in perpetual dread of ; though 
without any foretafte of thofe comforts, which flow from ardent 
zeal, or a confolatory belief that the church would derive either 
ftrength or credit from my fufferings. 

The mode of travelling, which I had now adopted being pro- 
bably unknown to you, I will give it as it deferves, a rough de- 
fcription. The camel appropriated to the accommodation of 
paflengers, carries two perfons, who are lodged in a kind of pan- 
nier laid loofely on the back of the animal. The pannier, termed 
in the Perfic, kidjahwah, is a wooden frame, with the fides 
and bottom of netted cords of about three feet long and two 
broad, and two in depth. The neceflaries of the paflengers are 
conveyed in the kidjahwah, and the journey being ufually 
made in the night-time, it becomes the only place of his reft ; 
for on the kafilah's arrival at his ft at ion, he muft, immediately 
exert himfelf in procuring provifions, water and fuel ; alfo in 
keeping an eye over his property to prevent theft. Had I been 
even much accuftomed to this manner of travelling, it muft have 
been irkfome j but a total want of practice, made it exceflively 
grievous. That you may not think my complaints ill-founded, 
or that I pofiefs the ingenious though unhappy talent of creating 



calamities, I will lay before you a fimple detail of fa&s. The 
box which I occupied, meafured a length of two feet feven 
inches, with a breadth of one foot and a halt ; and my height 
being five feet and nearly ten inches, you will neceflarily grant 
that equal addrefs'and force were required, to pack me in fo 
difproportionate a compafs. On reconnoitering the other fide of 
the camel, I difcovered, which alarmed me, an old woman aud 
an infant. My fears indeed were foon verified, by the child 
beginning to cry and the nurfe to fcold ; nor did the alternate 
ftrain ceafe the whole night. Our camel, too, was the worft 
conditioned of the drove ; and a want of ftrength made the 
poor animal ftumble and very reftive. His ill properties did 
not remain long concealed ; for, before the party had crept into 
their feats, the camel, which is accuftomed to receive its bur- 
then, in a kneeling pofture, fuddenly arofe, when I, the nurfe 
and child, with our various flock of equipment, fell to the ground 
in wide confufion j I then firft experienced a tafie of thofe ills, 
which are attached to the profeflion of Chriftian faith, in Ma- 
hometan countries. 

Th e camel driver, an Afghan of the rudeft caft, reprobated 
me in fevere terms as the caufe of the mifliap; but, he could 
exped no good fortune, he faid, whilft in the fociety of an infidel, 
to whom, only, where to be attributed the falfe fteps, and 
numerous they were, of the camel. With much joy I difco- 
vered, at the dawn of day, our halting place, where I was re- 

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lieved from a complication of difcordan* founds, and a cramp 
which had benumbed all my body. 

At Kabul I had endeavoured to procure a fervant, know- 
ing that in my prefent character, I fliould fuffer much incon- 
veniency without fuch an afliftant. But Bagdafir was averfe to 
the meafure, obferving that no Mahometan of character would 
enter my fervice, and that thofe who had overcome their fcru- 
ples would rob me. Waving therefore fo dangerous an accom- 
modation, I commenced the journey, with a refolution of boldly 
facing every difficulty; yet to obtain the camel driver's good 
will, I paid him more than the ufual hire. 

On the 24th, in the morning, at Azeeabad, five furfungs. 
The country, which I reviewed at day- break, was interfperfed 
with low hills, and generally cultivated. Having now distinctly 
noticed our party, I perceived that Dowran, the name of the 
conductor, who plumed himfelf on being of the fame tribe as 
Timur Shah, had with him a younger brother for a helper, 
and five camels j three of which carried merchandize, and two, 
paflengers. The cargo of one of thefe having been defcribed, 
it remains to fay, that on the other fat an old Afghan lady of 
fome distinction, her daughter, very handfome, and two grand 
children. The dame began an early conteft with Dowran, but 
after fome fmart Ikirmiihes, (he gained a compleat victory over 
the driver, who fat down eafy under the defeat, by obferving 



that the lady had fprung from a noble race, and that the fliril- 
nefs of her voice made his head ache. 

On the 25th, halted near a fmall fort, four furfungs. The 
night air was very cold, and the country prefented the barren 
afpect of a bare plain, on which were fcattered hills of rock 
and fand. Dowran's refufal of all afiiftance, on the fcore of 
my being an infidel and thereby unclean, obliged me to go 
daily in fearch of water and the dried dung* of camels, the 
only fuel of thefe parts, the kindling of which excited an ex- 
cruciating pain in my eyes. But having fortunately laid in a 
fmall flock of bifcuit, tea and fugar, I fubfuled without much 
labour of cookery. This was I think, the fir ft period of my 
life, in which to ufe a trite phrafe, I had been thrown wholly 
on my back ; for in the firft part of my journey, I ufually fared 
better than my companions. My manner was then confident, 
and the rough plenty of my board, procured many attentive 
adherents. The reverfe now befell me, I was treated on all 
fides with fuch a brutal contempt, and experienced from a want 
of every help fo many embarrafTments, that I grievoufly la- 
mented the difmiflion of my Mahometan covering} which 1 re- 
folved to take up on the moft favorable occafion. 

The Armenians, in the courfe of journeying, are neither fub- 

• For the purpofe of colleaing.thii fuel, kafikhs fcldom vary their ftatioos. 


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ject to the grievances which affected me ; nor do they feel with 
much fenfibility the infults of the Mahometans ; and by chiefly 
travelling with affociates of their own nation, a mutual aid is af- 
forded ; befides thefe advantages, they poflefs a flexibility of man- 
ners, which receives a form from every people with wiiom they 
mix. I have feen them manage with infinite addrefs, the Hindoo, 
the Mahometan, and even the Jew ; a race whom they affect, on 
a religious principle to hold in abhorrence ; but the grand caufe 
of their hatred, is a clofe commercial rivalihip. Treatment, at 
which an Armenian would have frniled or endured with profound 
fub.n iflion , I mould either by my hands, or at leaft my tongue, 
have warmly refentted : for though not ill veried in the manners of 
the eaft, I never had fufHcient forbearance to fubmit to the re- 
proachful infoknce which the Mahometans, efpecially the vulgar, 
exercife to wards thofe of a different faith. 

Dowran, from my aukwardnefs in all culinary matters, and 
a want of ftrength to affift in loading his camels, the only quali- 
ties in his mind, conftituting an ufeful man, conceived a contemp- 
tible opinion of me, which he thought could not be more forcibly 
exprefled, than circulating a report in the kafilah that I was a Jew. 
This was a new battery opened againft me, but having procured 
the protection of the old Afghan lady, by fondling the children 
and giving them fugar, I fuccefsfully combated Dowran, who had 
now altogether fubmitted to a female government. 

On the 26th, at Ghizni, four furfungs. This city remained 
Vol. II. N the 


the capital of an extenfive, powerful empire for the fpace of four 
hundred years, and according to the hiftorian Feriftita, was adorned 
by the Ghiznavi princes, particularly the great Mahmoud, with 
many a fumptuous and (lately pile. But, ah ! what humiliating 
forrow did I feel, how quickly did every fpark of the pride inci- 
dent to humanity fublide, on beholding the fallen ftate of Ghizni \ 
In vain did I look for its " gorgeous palaces and cloud capt 
" towers." They had been long levelled with the duft, and 
fave fome Mattered manes of railhapen ruins, not a monument 
is to be feen of Ghizni's former grandeur. The town 
Hands on a hill of moderate height, at the foot of which runs 
a fmall river,* whole borders are occupied by fome fruit gar- 
dens. Its (lender exigence is now maintained by fome Hindoo 
families, who fupport a fmall traffick, and fupply the wants of 
a few Mahometan refidents. 

At a ftort diftance from Ghizni, (lands the tomb of Mah- 
moud, where pilgrims refort from diftant places to fay their * 
prayers. But as the religious a£ls of fuch emigrants are rated 
by the degree of labour, length or danger of their journies, we 
are not to fuppofe that the pilgrimage improves either their 
heads or their hearts : though few moral benefits may accrue 
to the devotee from his wanderings, he derives from them a 
confiderable portion of fecular advantage. The Hadji, fo he is 

* It« ennent paffes to the weft or fouthward, but I am not acquainted with its name. 


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entitled, who has made the tour of Mecca, and vifited the 
tomb of his prophet, is ever after treated with a rcfpe&ful de- 
ference, for it is the top of Mahometan fafhion to be religious j 
and if a mendicant, his fcrip never wants a ftore. 

In mentioning Mahmoud and Ghizni, it were criminal to omit 
the name of the Perfian poet, Fardouft, who in his Sha Namah, 
hath given us a fplendid monument of epic poetry, and the pure 
language of his country. The protection of the great doth not 
always fall to the poet's lot } nor but rarely doth the public muni- 
ficence enable him to indulge the bent of his genius. Griping 
want often drives him to feek the hireling's pittance, and even in 
our enlightened land, we have feen the cold hand of penury prefs 
him to the grave. More propitious was the fortune of Ferdoufi : 
it gave him an imperial patron in Mahmoud, whofe praife he too 
laviflily fung. And when, for fome failure of the prince's promife, 
the poet retired into Perfia, his countrymen warmly vied in mani- 
iefting their liberality and applaufe. 

The climate of Ghizni is fo cold as to have become prover- 
bial, and the Afghans told me, that the town 5ias more than once 
been overwhelmed in fnow. The road to Ghizni ha?, I appre- 
hend, a fouth weft direction, and is diftant from Kabul eighty- 
two miles, at the rate of four miles to a furfung. I have been the 
more induced to notice this fa£l circumftantially ; as in our maps 
its diftance and courfe from Kabul is crroneoufly laid down ; fome 

N 2 of 

■ • 


of the French geographers, even place it to the weftward of Kan- 

In the morning of the 27th of September, at Heer Ghut, five 
furfungs. The country is interfperfed with low hills, and pro- 
duces, except in fome few cultivated fpots, little elfe than a prickly 
aromatic weed, on which camels feed with avidity ; and which 
with pafte of unfitted barley formed into balls, conftitutcs their 
common food. This animal is peculiarly ufeful in countries where, 
as in Afghaniftan, the roads are level, the foil dry, and provender, 
from the thin population, generally fcarce. The camel even oa 
much coarfer fare than has been mentioned, endures fevere fatigue, 
often carrying a load of eight hundred Englifli pounds ; and has 
fo tractable a temper, that eight of them fattened to each other in 
a firing, are managed by two men. When opprefled with thirft 
on the road, a camel throws from its ftomach a fleftiy fubftance 
of a purple colour, which either returns a fupply of water that 
has been previoufly depofited, or being put into friction in the 
mouth, yields fuch moifture as gives it occafional relief. 

On the 27th,* our party halted at the inftance of Dowraa 
wholly ; that is, without the previous aflent of the old lady, who 
inveighed againft his prefumption with fuch bitternefs and fo loudly, 
that flopping his ears, he ran off the field. You will pleafe to 


obferve, that the places noted as halting ftations, take their name 
either from fome adjacent fort, or if in an uninhabited country 
from lbme peculiar afpect or quality they may poffefs* 


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On the 29th, at Meercoot, fix furfungs. The air had become 
now fo cold, that at this period of the year, and in a latitude be- 
tween thirty- four and thirty-five, the water which was fufpended 
in a copper veflel from my camel, became folidly frozen during 
the night. 

On the 30th, at Mufhiedah, in a defert, fix furfungs. In tra- 
veling fo inhofpitable a tract, little matter of information op 
amufement can occur to the traveller. But had he been journey- 
ing over a land ftored with every gift and every beauty of nature, 
a companion like mine would have destroyed his joy and have con- 
verted his Eden to a defert. The nurle of the crying child was 
the immediate reverfe of an handfome woman } on this fcore me 
was not refponfible, and had flie been moderately clean, I had no 
right to complain, and might even have derived entertainment 
from her talk which flowed with a ftrong current. But trufting 
wholly to this qualification for a pallage through life, fhe feemed 
to defpife every other care. Her hair was a complicated maze of 
filth, which had never I belive been explored by comb, and from 
whofe clofe vicinity I received a fevere viiitation ; nor was her face 
while I knew her, once touched by water. 

On the firlt of November, at Tazee, five furfungs, in a bar- 
ren track. The air became now very hot in the day, and cold at 

On the 2d, at Killaut, a fort on an eminence, fix furfungs. 
This quarter of Afghanistan has the general afpeel of a defert ; 




and except fome fniall portions of arable land contiguous to the 
places of habitation no other cultivation is fecn. 

On the 23d at Teer Andazee, fix furfungs. The night air, 
hitherto cold and bleak, became at this place mild, and the 
heat of the day opprefiive. 

On the 4th at Potee, a fmall village, fituatc in a populous 
and fertile diftricl. Potee lyes to the right of the Kandahar 
road, but holding fome dependance on our Afghan lady, the 
two camels that carried the family and me, were difpatched, for 
her accommodation, to that place, where (he was received with 
much refpecl:. Whether the old lady had imagined, that the 
humble predicament in which I flood, would deter me from any 
attempt to fully the honor of her family, or that (he had no- 
ticed in me, a total indifference to all its motions, I know not, 
but the truth was, me made as little account of me, as if I 
had been wholly incapacitated from entailing on it any dilgrace. 
Nor, did I, fo temperate had my condition become, from the? 
predominance of other purfuits, feel the leaft mortification at 
the treatment. 

On the 5th in an open well cultivated plain, fix furfungs, 
where halting for a few hours, the kafilah proceeded two and 
a half furfungs farther to Kandahar. This city, comprifed within 
an ordinary fortification of about three miles in circumference, 
and of a fquare form, is populous and flourifhing. And lying 


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in the great road, which connects India with Perfia and Tar- 
tary, has been long a diftinguifhed mart. 

At Kandahar, are eftablifhcd many Hindoo families, chiefly 
of Moultan and the Rajepoot diftricts, who by their induftry and 
mercantile knowledge, have eflentially augmented its trade and 
wealth. The Turcoman merchants of Bochara and Samarkand, 
alfo frequent this mart, whence they tranfport into their own 
country a confiderable quantity of indigo, with which commo- 
dity Kandahar is annually fupplied from various parts of upper 
India. This city is more abundantly fupplied with provifions 
and at a cheaper rate, than any place I have fecn on the weft 
fide of the Indus. The grapes and melons of numerous kinds 
are peculiarly high flavoured, and are comparable with the fir ft 
fruits of Europe. The extenfive range of (hops occupied by 
Hindoo traders, with the eafe and contentment exprefTed in their 
deportment, affords a fair teftimony of their enjoying at Kan- 
dahar, liberty and protection, 

A son of Timur Shah governs the city with a tract of de- 
pendant territory, which produces it is faid, a revenue of eighteen 
lacks of rupees j and it may be juftly concluded from the ap- 
pearance of all clan*es of people, that this collection is made 
without any extraordinary rigour. The environs of Kandahar 
occupy an extenfive plain, covered with fruit gardens and cul- 
tivation, which are interfered with numerous ftreams, of fo 
excellent a quality as to become proverbial j and the climate is 



happily tempered, between the heats of India and the cold of 

It it generally fuppofed in Europe that Kandahar" ftands in 
a country of mountains, and we fpeak of the lofty pafies of 
Kandahar, as a point not lefs clearly afcertained than the cxiftence 
of the Alps. Permit me to redify this popular error, which, like 
many of a fimilar texture, has made mountains of mole-hills, and 
acquaint you that the face of the country furrounding the new 
city of Kandahar, forms an extenfive plain, which as it approaches 
the fite of the old fortrefs, becomes interfperfed with hills j but 
they are of a moderate height i nor, do they form any barrier of 
difficult accefs or deep extent. 

On leaving Kabul, Bagdafir, my Georgian hofl, had given me 
introductory letters to two Turkifh reudents of Kandahar ; the 
one kept a fmall (hop in the bazar, the other, Aga Ahmed, had a 
warehoufe of fome note in the karavanfera. This perfon re- 
ceived me in a courteous manner, and though then in the character 
of a Chiiftian, I did not experience any of that haughtinefs of 
manner, with which Mahometans ufually regard thofe of our 
faith. He even directed his countryman the fliopkeeeper, to pro- 
vide the neceflaries for my journey, and to carefully guard againll 
any fraud. 

The immediate departure of a kafilah, and the fail approach 
of winter, when the road to Pcrfia is impaflable, determined me 
to proceed to Herat ; though I wilhed much for a few days re- 


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fidence at Kandahar. Aga Ahmed made an agreement with the 
kafiiah bafhi* for my paflage, and alfo that I mould be furnimed 
with an attendant: this benevolent Turk did not formally re- 
commend me to the director's care, but enjoined him on the for- 
feiture of his favor to (hew me a particular kindnefs, which 
was only to be teftified by producing my written aflurance. 
Could I have found a fit aflbciate to divide the cares of houfe- 
keeping, I would have remained at Kandahar, during the win- 
ter, as I (till felt the effects of the late ficknefs, and feared a relapfc 
from the fatigue of travelling; but the predicament^ in which I 
flood, wholly precluded any domeftic connection with the Maho- 
metans i and that of fome ftray Armenians, whom I found there, 
did not feem eligible. 

The road from Ghizni to Kandahar, according to my grofs 
obfervations, tends to the fouth-weft j and the country has ge- 
nerally a barren afpect, with a fcanty fupply of wood and water. 
The buildings from a fcarcity of timber, are conftrucled as in 
the Kabul diftricts, of fun-burnt bricks, and covered with a flat 
arched roof of the like materials. 

On the 8th of November left Kandahar, and proceeded to 
Koby, three furfungs, a fmall village furrounded by a fertile 
plain. At the diflance of two or three miles to the northward 

• Balh in the Turkifli language fignifics head, and is often applied in Perfia to the 

head of a fociety or party. 

Vol. II. O of 


of Kandahar, is fccn on the left the remains of the old fortrefs, 
(landing on the fummit of a rocky hill of a moderate height, but 
abrupt elevation. The road at this place tends over a ftony afcent 
of eafy accefs, lkirted on each fide with fcattered hills and wide in- 
tervals of level land. It is the form of this part of Afghanistan, 
which has given rife, I apprehend, to the European belief of the 
mountains and paffes of Kandahar. 

On the 9th, at Aulkuckana, three furfungs, a fmall village 
on a thinly cultivated plain. Our flow progrefs was occafioned 
by the kafilah bami remaining at the city to adjuft fome bufi- 
nefs; he had however wholly neglecled minp, for not a perfon 
when my feci was known, would even touch mv garment. 

My ill fortune on the fcore of an aflbciate, which feemed 
to purfue me with an inveterate rigor, had now given me in 
the place of the fcoiding nurfe and crying child, a theological 
and very clamorous difputant. This bewildered man, unhap- 
pily 'for himfelf and for his neighbours, had conned over fome 
of thofe books of ingenious devices and quaint fyllogifms, which 
are held in high note among the modern Mahometans, and have 
fixed among them a falfe diftorted taftc. Even Hafis's poems, 
fo confpicuoufly replete with wit, and with incitements to mere 
mortal pleafures, are tortured by them into praifes of Mahomet 
and his religion. This fanatical logician was unknown to the 
other paflengers, but he loft no time in difpiaying to them his 


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ftore of endowments, and feeing me a favorable fubject he di- 
rected his full force at my head. 

I had engaged the fervices of a travelling Arab taylor, and 
was anticipating the various conveniencies which they promifed, 
when he was driven from the profpeft of an eafy livelyhood by the 
threats of the logician, who denounced Mahomet's vengeance 
againft him if he cat the bread of an infidel. The poor man, 
hungry, and almoft naked, ftartcd at the danger, and fearful of in- 
curring fo powerful a wrath, refigned his new office, and went to 
live as it might plcafe god. Thus had I the dreary profpect of 
being peftered for the term of twenty days by this outrageous Ma- 
hometan, who fo far from being confcious of any mifchief, be- 
lieved that he was performing an acT: of extenfive merit. 

On the evening of the 10th, the kafilah moved, and arrived 
the next morning at Howrah Muddit Khan,* fix furfungs, the 
country open, and the foil, a mixture of light fand and earth, 
producing generally that fpecies of weed which has been noted in 
the remarks of the road from Kabul to Kandahar. 

On the 13th, at Khackchamparah, fix furfungs. No marks 
of habitation were feen during the journey of thefe two laft days. 

On the 14th, at Greilhk, feven furfungs, a larged walled vil- 
lage, on the fkirts of which runs a fmall ftream of good water ; 


• Howrah fignifies an artificial fountain or rcfcrvoir of water ; one of which had 
Ween conftruded at this place by Muddit Khan, for the accommodation of travellers. 



halted two days at this place, where a toll is collected on mer- 
chandize and paflengers, and where a ftock of provifions was laid 
in to fupfily our confumption, through a tract of defert country 
extending from this ftation to the weftward. My perfecting 
neighbour, had already deprived me of two fervants, when after 
much intreaty, mixed with a warm eulogium on his extenhve ca- 
pacity, I prevailed on him to moderatt his refentment againft me, 
and ceafe to anathematife thofe, who might in future be induced 
from their neceflity to eat the bread of an infidel. He had by his 
rhetoric, precluded me even from the ufe of a barber ; one of 
whom being obferved by him at the clofe of an operation on my 
head, was reprobated for his impurity in virulent language, and 
compelled to cleanfe his razor by an ordeal procefs, the expence of 
which was defrayed by Chriftian-money. On paying the charge, I 
obferved to our logician, whom I now treated with little ceremony, 
that he mould alfo caufe the ftiaver to purge the money by the like 
trial, that he might not be polluted by the touch ; a precaution I 
added, that would doubtlefs have been adopted, but for a fear of 
half the amount being loft in the large alloy that debafes all Ma- 
hometan coins. I was, he faid, an incorrigible Kaufir, whom ilt 
fortune had placed with him on the fame camel, and which he 
feared could never thrive under fuch a weight of fin. 

The urgent calls of hunger now gave me a third fervant, who 
was in his way from Moultan, to make the pilgrimage of MuC 


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chid * Think how ardent muft have been the zeal which incited 
this pilgrim to fo diftant a journey, and fupported him againfl. the 
inclemency of winter, and the inhofpitality of a rude people, 
with fcarcely a covering to his back, no flioes to his feet, or an 
atom of money in his purfe. Though I gave him fome warm 
clothing and fubitantial food, he was not able to keep pace with 
our party. 

His fuccefibr was a Kalhmirian, who had a countenance as 
demure as that of Gil Bias's Ambrofe Lamela, and to the extent 
of his ability, as great a rogue. To enhance the value of his fcr- 
vices, for which I was obliged to pay largely, he expatiated on the 
fin he was about to commit, eating the fait of an infidel j but I 
foon found there was no reftri&ion to his diet. Mod of the AG- 
atic nations have affixed to fait a certain facred property, but it is 
held m the higheft degree of reverence by the Mahometans, who 
fpeak of fait as Europeans do of bread. A fervant is faid to eat 
the fait of his matter, and when guilty of ingratitude, he is ftig- 
matized with the name of a Nimmock Haram, or a polluter of 
his fait, which is, I believe, the only term applied by Mahometan 
nations to fuch an offender. 

Here I am induced to notice the ominous qualities vulgarly 
afcribed on fome occafions to fait in our own country j as when it 
is accidentally fpilled, fome part is thrown over the left fhoulder, 

• It is at tnis day the leputcd capital of Khora&a, 





that the fuppofcd en firing evil may be averted ; a ceremony I . 
have fecn even obferved by thofe who were far removed from 
the lower clafles of life. But early impreflions are not eafily 
effaced, and they often impart to the ideas a lafting colour ; ef- 
pccially amongft thofe who are fecludcd from the more hack- 
neyed paths of the world. 

On the 17th, at Shah Nadir, a ftation in the defart, feven 
furfungs. This refervoir built by Nadir Shah, is a fquare of about 
twenty feet, over which is erecled on pillars a terrace, which ex- 
tending beyond the margin of the water, affords a convenient 
lodging to travellers. 

On the 18th at Shorab* five furfungs ; fome fpots of cul- 
tivation were fcattered around this ftation, but no village in light. 

On the 19th at Lungherah, a place of halt, in a defert coun- 
try, where we found only one weak fpring of water, which was 
quickly confumed. 

On the 20 at Dilaram, fix furfungs, a fort in rums which 
is lkirted by a rivulet, on whofe margin are feen fome fcatter- 
ing trees j a rare fight in this land ! but, the adjacent country 
is barren and uninhabited. 

On the 21ft, at Buckwau, feven furfungs, a ftation in the 

On the 22d, at Drauze in the defert, fix furfungs.— This day 

• Signifying hit or brackilh water, but at this ftation the water was frcftu 


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the fun fhof forth its rays wh icn g reat force » and tne ground 
which we occupied being a uare fand, reflected an intenfe heat. 
Whilft I was panting under a very flimfy covering, I obferved 
that my neighbour, a Turkoman Seid, who had no fhelter, was 
ftruck by the fun, and lay ftruggring in a violent agony. 

The Mahometans thought him poffefled with the devil, 
and inftead of affording any proper aid, began an extraordinary 
converfation with the fuppofed fiend ; efpecially my learned af- 
fociate who in a peremptory manner, ordered the devil to de- 
part out of the body of a true believer, and a branch of the 
holy flock ; but, feeing that the command had no effect, though 
conveyed in Arabic and a vehement tone of voice, I requefted 
to interfere ; and lifting the incumbent from the ground, threw 
fome water on his face, and forcibly poured a quantity down his 
throat. The Seid foon felt the natural benefit of this admini- 
ftration ; but the violence of the fhock created a temporary 
ftupefaclion, during which he uttered fo incoherent a language 
that it confirmed the opinion that a demon was fpeaking, and 
not the Tartar. 

Our Logician addrefTed the infernal perfonage in a very fpi- 
rited harangue, feverely reprehending his entrance into the body 
of one of the prophet's defendants, and challenging him, that 
the cloven foot might confpicuoufly appear, to repeat the Ma- 
hometan creed. To this telt the (battered ftite of the Scid'a 
fenfes were not yet equal j nor, was it until he had fmoaked his 



pipe, that he diftincV ■ ^\\h (unrounding apphufe, pronounced 
his creed and (hook off diabolical conr"?**^*** 

On the 23d, at Ghu :..ow in the defart, five furfungs. This 
evening my performing companion left our party and proceeded 
with fome Hindoo Traders to Fera, an Afghan town of fome note, 
lying about forty or fifty miles to the fouth-weft of Drauze. But, 
my joy at this riddance, like moft joys of fublunary texture, 
was of fliort duration ; for the vacant place fell to the lot of 
a much more obnoxious aflbciate. 

I begin now to be afhamed at having impofed upon you 
fo large a portion of private ftory ; yet, without it, I perceive my 
fubjeel would be as barren as the land I travel over ; which ex- 
hibits to the fatigued eye, one vaft fleril plain, without rivers, 
wood, or fcarcely a place of human habitation. Though perfonal 
. recitals are ufually fufpectcd of vanity, and even in their bed fenfe 
partake more of the amazing than the inftrucYive qualities, you 
may perhaps gather from my anecdotes, fome fubfidiary knowledge 
of the human character, an important fubjeft, and not lefs va- 
rious than the human face. My next aflbciate was the Arab 
taylor, already mentioned, who fucceeded to the vacant pannier 
by the afliftance of one of his countrymen in our paity, a 
trader of fome note. A converfation held when I was thought 
afleep, fome nights before, between the logician and the taylor; 
in which the latter was ftrenuoufly exhorted to rob me, boded 
no good from the change; and this counfel was ftrengthened 


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by a doctrine, very prevalent among lower claffes of Ma- 
hometans, that it is meritorious and laiL. ble to attack the pro- 
perty of an infidel. Nor was the advice 1 loft on the taylor, who 
promifed an active diligence in performing the required fervice. 
Combining therefore the intereft of the world with that of his 
religion, he commenced a brilk attack on my chattels ; but, 
which at that time my vigilance prefcrved. His fubfequent at- 
tempts however were more fuccefsful, as were feen in the diminu- 
tion of my apparel. This freebooting fyftem of the taylor's kept 
me in conftant alarm, and difplayed every day in ftronger co- 
lours, the ill confequences of my Chriftian garb. 

On the 24th, at Ghiraunee, fix furfungs. A populous walled 
village, fituate near a fmall running water. Halted there the 
next day to make the payment of a toll, and purchafe provifions 
for a three days journey over a defert, which reaches from this 
place to the confines of Khorafan. My Kaflimirian fervant was 
wholly diverted of religious fervor or a religious cloak. For he 
neither prayed nor waftied j but, was much addicted to theft ; 
and while the taylor purloined my cloths, he was occupied in 
ftealing my victuals. Yet this propenfity was, in fome degree, 
compenfated by his fervices, which found active employment in 
bringing water and fuel, baking cakes, and boiling my coffee. 

On the 27th, at Khoos, in the defart, five furfungs. The tay- 
lor's payments for conveyance not being regularly made, the feat 
was again put up to fale, when it was purchafed by an Hin- 
Vol. II. P doftany 


doftany Mahometan, who had left his wife and family at Juan- 
pour, in the diftrict of Benares, and was thus far advanced on 
a pilgrimage to Mufchid. From the mouth of this devotee, who 
had formerly been a marauding foldier, there iflued an almoft 
inceflant ejaculation of prayer. In truth it may be faid, that he 
overflowed in holy zeal, for he prayed and cryed in a fucceflive 
rotation what an extraordinary character would this be thought 
in a country where its inhabitants, though ftiunning no peril 
or fatigue in the purfuit of wealth and pleafure, will fcarcely 
crofs a ftreet to look into a Church. The various precepts of 
education and religion, eftablifhed in the world, but, efpecially, 
the different orders of government, produce fo ftrong a diflimi- 
larity in the manners of men, that in inveftigating thofe of the 
mod oppofite tendency, they would feem to arife from beings of 
a diftincl fpecies. 

On the 28th, at Gimmuch, feven furfungs, a ftation in the 

On the 29th, at Ouckal, a large walled village, ftanding 
within the limit of the province of Khorafan, and inhabited wholly 
by Perfians. It is proper here to obferve, that the natives of Per- 
fia proper, particularly the foldiery, are often termed at home, as 
in foreign countries, Kuzzel Bach ; a Tuikifli compound, fignify- 
ing, I am informed, red head, and originating from the Perfian 
cap, being covered at the top with red cloth. 

On the 3wth, a halt. 


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On the 31ft, at Sheerbuchfh, a defert ftation, fix furfungs. 

On the ift of November, at Zearut Ghah, feven furfungs. A 
fmall village, on the fltirts of which are feen the remains of fome 
tombs or religious edifices. 

On the 2nd, at the city of Herat, three furfungs. The road 
from Kandahar to Gimmuch leads to the weft or weft by north ; 
from thence to Herat, it has I apprehend, nearly a northern courfe, 
yet I cannot account for the fudden deviation of the track. The 
country is generally open, and interfperfed with barren rocky hills 
of a moderate height. The foil is light and fandy, producing na- 
turally little elfe than the aromatic weed before noted. 

The city of Herat ftands on a fpacious plain, which is inter- 
fered with many fprings of running water, fome of which are 
fupplied with bridges ; and the numerous villages furrounded with 
plantations, muft afford a pleafant view to the traveller, whofe 
eye has been wearied with the defcrts of Afghaniftan. 

The director of the kafilah carried us to the karavanferali, 
where paffengers only are lodged j the other places of this defcrip- 
tion, being all occupied by refident traders. In this fquare of the 
karavanfera, I perceived an Armenian, whom I informed with little 
ceremony, leaft he mould hear a lefs favourable ftory, that I 
was an European, returning from India into my own country : 
but, for greater perfonal feenrity, I had aflumed the name of 
an Armenian. And to quiet any fufpicion of the truth of my re- 
lation, I produced a letter, which the Georgian, Bagdafir, had writ- 

P 2 ten 


ten in my favour to an Armenian, who lived in a village about 
forty miles from Herat. My addrefs was clofed by obferving, that 
though not in want of money, I flood in great need of his friendly 
ofiices, as he muft be well aware of the various difficulties affecTing 
thofe of our feci, efpecially when alone, among fo bigotted a peo- 
ple as thofe of Khorafan. The Armenian heard the little oration, 
which all my powers of fpeech had pointed at him, with a refolute 
coolnefs, and perceiving, I fuppofe, that my acquaintance would 
yield no profit, he turned from me and went away, without even 
exprefling the common terms of civility. The frequent occafions 
which have occurred to me of noticing the Armenian character, 
foon cooled my refentment, and enabled me to reconcile the wari- 
nefs and apathy of this man, with the common principles which 
govern his feci. 

The prefent race of Armenians, like the Jews, are with little 
exception occupied in commerce, chiefly in its fmalleft branches, 
and having long loft with their country the fpirit of patriotifm, 
diverted alio of any valuable attainments of knowledge, they ex- 
hibit but a faint discrimination of character ; being generally in- 
duftrious, lei vile and difhoneft j they are Scattered over various 
parts of Turkey, Perfia, and India, where except in the Englifh 
colonies, they live on a precarious fufFerancc, being often on tri- 
vial pretences, infulted, opprefled and plundered. To palliate 
the evils inherent to their fituation, and create a fubftitute for 
powers, honors, and national importance, they purfuc the dif- 


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fcrent roads of traffick with unremitting ardor, and invariably 
mcafure their pleafures by tlie mere extent of their wealth. Little 
fuiceptible of friendfhip, they are rarely induced to afford even 
among themfelves mutual a iTi fiance, or difpofed to promote the 
enjoyment of fociety : the Armemians at this day are divided into 
two general claffes j the one the mod numerous, eflablifhed in 
the Turkifh dominions ; the other in Perfia. 

The city of Jolfa, contiguous to Ifpahan, was expreflly 
founded for the accommodation of the Armenians, by Shah 
Abbas, who aware of the benefits that would accrue to his 
kingdom, from a commercial and temperate people, gave them 
an ample protection, and many indigencies. He permitted them 
it is faid to accompany their adventures to foreign countries, 
and advanced a capital to thofe not already opulent, but he al- 
ways kept their families at Jolfa in pledge of good conduct. 
The Indian Armenians are of the Jolfa colony, and from an 
actual refidence in that city, or fprung from families originally 
fettled there, are all converfant in the Pcrfian language. The 
vicinity of the Pcrfian gulf, which has long maintained an im- 
portant trade with India, naturally allured the Armenians to a 
region, which at once held out to them the hope of fpeedy opu- 
lence, and the advantages of a temperate government. Nor did 
they ever think of returning into Perfia ; but having a mailed a 
fufheient wealth, purchafed the releafe of their families on the 
payment of large funis. 



From the defcription given of the Armenian character, which 
I am not confeious of having in the leaft overcharged, you will 
not be furpiizcd at the mode in which I was received by my bro- 
ther Chriftian at Herat. But I now determined to Aide into the 
Mahometan community, on the firft fairoccafion ; feeing that with- 
out adding one benefit, I was like to become a martyr to our 
faith. In all parts of the city which I frequented, I was known 
only as a Mahometan, except in the karavanfera, where I experienced 
unccafing infult and derifion for the Perfians affect a gnater 
fcruple in communicating with thofe of a different religion, than 
any other feci of Mahometans. I was not even permitted to 
draw water out of a common well, but ordered to place my 
veflel on the ground, which was filled, by a peifon hired for 
the purpofe, from a height and not touched. When I have 
been waiting for this fupply, the town boys who in their round 
of diverfion, would occafionally take our karavanfera in their 
way, learning that I was an impure perfon, ufed to form a cir- 
cle round me, and defired to have the unclean part (hewn to 
them, and feemed much difappointed, on being told that I was 
unclean all over. My journey hitherto, if not productive of 
other advantage, has corrected my former belief of Mahometan 
politenefs and fuavity of manners, and alfo I trufr, qualified that 
infolence of carriage, which I have too frequently evinced to the 
inhabitants of our eaftern territories. 

Could one of our Indian grandees in the fullnefc of his 


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power, fe*ted in a palankeen, perhaps on an elephant, furrounded 
with thofe bands of ftickmen and pikemen, who difperfe every 
man and bcaft that dares to crofs his way : Could this perfon- 
age be tranfportcd on the fudden to Herat, how fpeedily would 
he be diverted of his plumes, and reduced to his Ample value. 
Whenever I quitted the purlieus of my lodging, I became a 
grave hypocrital Muflulman, with the enjoyment of all his pri- 
vileges ; and the city containing a various defcription of people, 
there was little apprehenfion of a difcovery. I daily frequented 
the eating- hou fes, where all the talk of the day is circulated, 
and chiefly fabricated, in conjunction with the barber's fliop^ 
which in Herat, has a neat appearance. In the centre of it 
{rands a imall ftone pillar, on the top of which is placed a cup 
of water, in readinefs for operation, and the fides of the (hop 
are decorated with looking glaflcs, razors, and beard combs. 
Home having no pleafures for me, I was glad to leek them abroad j 
nor did I fail in procuring equal amufement and information. 
Neither Afghaniftan or the northern provinces of Pcifia, permit 
the rcfidencc of courtezans, or any women that dance or fing 
for the public entertainment. The northern Perfians affect to 
exprefs an abhorrence of the Indian Mahometans, whom they 
reprobate for a general depravity of manners, and a neglect of 
religious duties, yet this temperate and demure people are much 
defamed, if under their myftcrious carriage of body, they do not 
practice in their different vocations, every fpecics of deceit and 


1 .0 


knavery. In India, it is a well known fact, that the Moguls, 
a denomination given there to all foreign Mahometans, throw 
oft their northern cloke, and becoming notorious debauchees, 
laugh to fcom the precepts of their doctors. 

Herat is a fmallcr city than Kandahar, but maintains a 

1 rcfpeclable trade ; and the market-place occupying a long ftrect, 
covered with an arched roof, is filled with (hops of various 
wares. Bread, rice, and flefti meats, with numerous fruits and ve- 
getables, arc equally cheap and abundant j and the grand market, 
held once a week, is fo crouded with the produce of the neigh- 
bouring villages, that a paflage through it is difficult and fati- 
guing. Coarfe woollens of a flrong texture are manufactured in 

f the adjacent diuYicts, a great part of which made into garments, 
are exported into various parts of northern Pcrfia furtouts of 
fheepfkin with the wool in the infide, are fecn hanging at al- 
moft every (hop, and are ufed by all clafles of people in the 
winter feafon. A fmall quantity of European commodities is 
brought to this city from the gulf of Perfia, confuting of French 
broad cloths, cutlery, fmall looking glaffes, and prints j but their 
low prices (hew that the demand is very limited. The police of 
Herat is judicioufly regulated, and the adminiftration of juftice vi- 
gorous. Two men, apparently above the ordinary clafs, having 
been convicted of theft, were fufpended by the heels from a dome, 
which (lands in the centre of the market, where they remained 
near an hour, to the terror of a gazing populace; having wit- 


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nefl'ed a part of this exhibition, I returned to my lodging with 
the interefted belief that my property, which was all in fpecie, 
concealed about my perfon, had derived from it an additional 

On exchanging fome gold at this place, I found the rate 
more favourable than at Kandahar or Kabul} yet ftill one in 
fixteen lefs than the Indian value. Though I was unremittingly 
cautious in concealing my money, knowing that a difcovery 
would bring an hoft of enemies on my head, one of my tra- 
velling acquaintances, fuddenly opened the door of my apart- 
ment at Herat, a very unufual practice among Afiatics, and 
found me examining the ftate of my finances. At the fight of 
the gold fpread on the floor, he was flxuck with furprize, and 
exprefled an eager curiofity to know the occupation, that had 
procured me fo much wealth. But either my fpeedy departure 
from Herat, or a more than ordinary honefty in the Perfian, 
prevented the ill confequence which 1 had apprehended from the 
imprompt vifit, 

Khorasan,* the mod eaftem the largeft, as well as the mod 
important province of Perfia, participated the various and fevcre 
revolutions which affected the ftate of the kingdom, from the 
diliblution of the Grecian dynafty, until the end of the ninth 
century, when it was involved in the Tartar dominion of the 


• Khor in the ancient Perfic, it is.faiJ, fignincs the I ill. — Sir William Jones. 

Vol. II. Q_ Sammani 


Sammani race ; and in the beginning of the fixteenth century, 
after having experienced a fucceflion of Tartar and Arabian ru- 
lers, it was annexed to Peifia by Ifinael, firnamed Soli, from 
, whom the appellation of Sofi has been given in Europe to the 
Peril an kings. 

Herat had continued the principal city of Khorafan, until 
the fucceflion of Ifmael, who beftowed the pre-eminence on 
Mufchid, from its containing the tomb of Moozau Reza, his 
fuppofed anceftor, and one of the twelve g r and Imaums or priefts 
of the Perftans. Since Mufchid became the capital of Khora- 
fan, it has been enriched by laige donations of the Mahometans 
of the feet of Ali, generally known by the name of Schiahs. 
Even Nadir Shah, the leaft difpofed of the Perfian kings to ec- 
clefiaftical endowments, ornamented a mofque, which had been 
built over the tomb of Moozau Reza, with a many cabinet of 
filver and a fpacious lamp of the fame metal. 

The religion of the koran had exilic J throughout the vaft 
Mahometan empire, for the fpace of nine hundred years with- 
out any eflential change, when it experienced a fevere blow from 
the intrepidity of Ifmael and rapid fuccefs of his arms. In the 
courfe of the firft periods of Mahometanifm, four Arabian doc- 
tors, Malek, Ambe), Hanneifa and SharTee, made commentaries 
on the original text, which were adopted by fects, now feverally 
diftinguifhed by the names of commentators. But thefe explana- 
tions do not appear to have militated with much force againft 


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the firft fyftem, or created any violent feuds among the different 

As the grand innovation of the Mahometan religion was ef- 
fected in Perfia, and chiefly exifts in that region, I am induced 
to make a brief chronological review of fome of its more im- 
portant epochs, previoufly to this event. It is feen that the 
Tartar Arfaces, having expelled the princes who fucceeded to the 
conqueft of Alexander, eftablifhed a dynafty, which flourifhcd 
for the fpace of four hundred and fifty years, and which in the 
two hundred and twenty fixth year of the Chriftian acra was 
extinguifhed, in the perfon of Artabanes, by Ardefliere,* the 
Artaxerxes of the Greeks, faid tp to have been defcended from 
the ancient race of Perfian kings. 

Should it be found, which I am induced to believe, that 
the Perfians and the Parthians are a diftinct people, it is not 
improbable that the nations which ancient hiftory denominates 
Parthians, were compofed of the Tartars of the Arfacian dy- 
nafty, which held a long pofleffion of Perfia, and maintained 
fuch fierce conflicts with, the Roman empire. The dexterity of 
the archers, which conftituted the ftrength of the Parthian ca- 
valry, and an excurfive rapid manner of fighting, which was 
reprefented as moft formidable when they appeared to fly from 

• The fucceflbre of thi« prince were denominated SafTanides, from Saflan the fa- 
ther of Ardefliere. 

Q^2 battle, 

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battle, correfponds dofely with the military practice of the mo- 
dern Tartars j in contradiftinclion to the other nations of nor- 
thern Afia. 

The Arabians carried their conquefts and their religion into 
Perfia, in fix hundred and fifty one of our sra, fioin which 
time it remained fubjeft to the khaliphat, until the middle of 
the eleventh century, when it was overrun and fubdued by 
Jogrul Beg, a Turkoman prince of the Seljukian* race. The 
fucceflbrs of Jogrul, continued' to govern certain quarters of 
Perfia in the year 1187, when the laft prince of that race was 
conquered by Amalek Dinar, who in his turn fell under the 
power of Jakafli, the Turcoman prince of Kharafm. But in 
1218 of our aera, the Kharafmian empire, the Arabian khalifat 
with the grandeft portion of the eaftern world were fw allowed 
up in the power of Jcnjis Khan, whofe poftcrity held poflef- 
fion of Perfia, for the fpace of one hundred and feventy-four 
years, though ultimately rent into fmall principalities by a feries 
of interline wars. It became after that period, an appendage to 
the dominion of Timur, and appears to have acknowledged in 
feparate governments, a general dependance on certain branches 
of his family, until the year 1499, when Ifmacl Son, taking up 

• So named from Scljuk his granJfire, who occupied a private flation in the vici- 
nity of Samarkand, where he held large landed pofleffions. 


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arms again ft the Tartar princes, rofe by a quick fucceffion of 
victory, and aflumed the undivided throne of Perfia. , 

It is feen in Knolles*s very eftimable hiftory of the Turks, 
that Ifmael was the fon of Hyder, furnamed from the place of 
his birth, or the refidence of his youth, Ardebil, and that he 
was honourably defcended. Retiring from the occupations of 
the world, Hyder fixed his abode in the city of Tauris, where 
he paffed an auftere contemplative life, and was held by the 
inhabitants of that quarter in great veneration. The fame of 
his character, foon procured him the name of a prophet, 
and caufed multitudes of people to refort to him from all parts 
of Perfia and Armenia. The more to leducc the multitude, ever 
delighted with novelty, he began to inveigh againft the doctrine 
of the Mahometans, which enjoins a facred remembrance of 
the three* firft fucceflbrs of their prophet, and to revive the 
opinions of a certain preceding dervifli named Guini, who was 
known alfo by the defignation of Sofi. He aflerted as if in- 
fpired from above, that none fliould enter the kingdom of hea- 
ven, but thofe of the fctt of Ali, who was the genuine heir 
and aflbciate of Mahomet ; and ordained, that the memory of 
Abubucker, Omar, and Ofman fliould be held accurfed. The 
king of Perfia, whom Knolles calls Aflymbeius Ulan Caflanes.-f 1 


• Abubucker, Omar, and Ofman. 

t It is fcrioufly regretted that the Greek and Roman writers, as alfo many of the 



to ftrcngthen his government and acquire popularity, invited 
Ilyckr to court, \ud gave him his daughter in marriage, from 
which fprung Ifmael. Being now brought forward on a more 
confpicuous theatre; Ilydcr grew into the general eftimation of 
the people, which alarming the fears of Jacoob the fon of Huf- 
fan, who had fucceeded to the kingdom, he lecretly put him to 

Ism af. l flying from the power of Jacoob, took refuge with 
the chief of a fmall territory, on the fouthem borders of the 
Cafpian fca, named Pyrchales * Some of the friends of Hy- 
der retired at the fame time into lefler Armenia, then fubjec"l 
to the Turks, where they promulgated their doctrine with 
fuccefs. Their difciples were diftinguifhed by a red band tyed 
over the turban, whence it is faid they firft obtained the ap- 
pellation of Kuflel Bafh, which in the Turkifh language, as 
has been already noticed, fignifies red head. Ifmael during 

moderns, have not delivered to us the literal names of men and places, which occur in 
their hiftory of foreign nations. This want of accuracy, or rather the impulfc of an 
abfurd vanity, has involved the European hiftories of Alia, in a maze of obfeurity j 
thofe efpccially which repn.-fent.ed the feries of warfare maintained againft Pcjfia by the 
ftates of Greece, and ultimately the comjueft of that empire by Alexander of Macedon. 
The name given by Knolles to the Perfian king, taken from fomc latin records, is evi- 
dently a mimomcr, as no fuch denomination is now in ufe among the Mahometans, and 
we know that no change has affected their names, fince the firli cilabliflinuni ot the 
khaliphat. His regal title, being a Tartar, might ha e been A?.im licg, iignifying a 
great lord or prince, and his domcftic appellation, Huflan Caffim. 
• So expreffed by Knollct. 


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his retirement advanced, with zeal, the tenets of his father, and 
being by nature confpicuoufly eloquent, of a 4 penetrating ge- 
nius and auftere life, of a comely perfon and invincible courage, 
was by the vulgar, counted more than human. The nobles of 
the neighbouring country, allured by the endowments of ifmael,, 
and the fpecious novelty of his doftrine, reforted to his place 
of abode, with offers of fupport } and, though feeming to ihuu 
them, he was inverted with authority, honors and wealth. In 
token of his rare qualifications and a belief in his power of 
prophecy, Ifmael received the title of Sofi, " which, faith Knollea" 
fignifyeth among thefe people, a wife man, or the interpreter of 
the Gods."* 

The death of Jacoob, which muft have happened at an early 
period of his reign, and the tumults that enfued in Perfia, then 
ufurped by one Elvan Beg, who was alfo engaged in a warfare 
with his brother, named Morad, encouraged Ifmael to urge his 
fortune on fo promifing a field. Obtaining fome military aid 
from Pyrchales, his firft protector, he penetrated into Armenia, 
where he recovered the patrimony of his family, and was cor- 
dially received by thofe who had favored his father. Purlumg 
his fuccefs he penetrated into Shirvan, he took and facked Shah 
Machee, the capital of the province, by the plunder of which 

• This word I appreh nJ is purely of Greek origin j the Mahometans haJ at this 
period, been long convcrfent in Greek letters. 



he largely increafed the numbers and hopes of his army. 
Elvan Beg had now expelled Morad, and was bufted in pu- 
nilhing fome of the principal citizens of Tauris, the capital 
of the kingdom, for having taken up arms in favor of his 
brother, when Ifmael fuddenly approaching the city, took it 
without oppofition. Elvan deprived of other fupport, formed 
an alliance with his brother, but in his progrefs to form a junc- 
tion with the army of Morad, he was vigoroufly attacked by 
Ifmael, and flain in battle ; the conqueror marched without de- 
lay againft Morad, who was emcamped at Babylon, and com- 
pelled him to fly into the Arabian defert:* he rofe without a 
competitor to the throne of Pcrfia.-f- 

Ismael is perhaps the firft prince, who at once conquered 
a fpacious kingdom and the religious prejudices of its people. 
Nor does it appear that any of thofe violent commotions were ex- 
cited, which ufually mark the progrefs of ecclefiaftical reformation. 
The fyftem of Hyder and Ifmael, was founded on the pofition 
that Mahomet had given his daughter Fatima to Ali, as a mark 
of the greateft affection, and bequeathed to him the fucceffion 
of the khaliphat. But, that in defiance of this facred teftamcnr, 
Abubucker, one of the aflbciated friends of Mahomet, fetting 
arfide the claims of Ali, had aflumed the powers of government, 

* Where he was cut off" by domeftic IreaeVery. 
f Ifmael's acccflion happened about the year 1508. 




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which at his death, were alfo forcibly held in a confequent ad- 
rniniftration by Omar and Ofman. But, that the injuries of 
Ali, having ultimately roufed the divine interpofition, he became 
the ruler of the Muflulmans.* This docYrine being unani- 
moufly received, Ifmael ordained, that as the three firft kha- 
liphs were ufurpers and facrilegious violators of the laft mandate 
of their prophet, their memory ftiould, at the five ftated times 
of prayer, be reprobated with every expreflion of contumely, 
and the fevereft vengeance of God denounced againft them. 
He alfo inferted at the conclufion of the Mahometan creed, 
that Ali is the friend or the beloved of God, and directed that 
he and his pofterity fhould be diftinguifhed by appellation of 
imaums, or holy men.f In contradiftinclion to the Soonis, who 
in their prayers crofs the hands on the lower part of the breaft, 
the Schiahs drop their arms in ftraight lines } and as the Soonis at 


* In commemoration of the four firft fucceffors of Mahomet, who were alfo hi* 
confidential aflbciates, and by their cmhufiaftic courage, had been his grand inftri- 
mcnts in aggrandizing the khaliphat, the general body of Mahometans, except the 
Pcrfiarvs, arc often termed Char Yarce, or thofe of the four friends. They arc likewife 
called Soonis, an Arabic word, fignifying the followers of the right path. 

f The real number conftfts of eleven perfons, to which a twelfth, fuppofed yet to 
come, has been added ; their names are Ali, Huflin and Hufleyn, his funs, Zyne-ul- 
Abcdein, Mahomet Baulcur, Jaffier Sadue, Moufe Fwazim, Ali Moufa Befj, Mahomet 
Tuckee, Ali Nughee, Huflin Anfcasy and Mahomet Mhedy. The titles beftowed 
ufually on Ali are, Ameer-ul-Momcnein, Mortiz AH and Hydcr. This laft denomi- 
nations fignifying a lion, is particularly given to Ali, when his military exploits arc re- 
hear fed. But when the profoundeft refpeel is expreflcd for his memory, he is entitled 
Amccr-ul-Momcnein, or lord of tbe faithful. 

Vol. II. R certain 


certain periods of the prayer, prefs their forehead on the ground 
or a carpet, the fectaries of Ali lay on the fpot which the head 
reaches, a fmall tile of white clay, impreOed with characters facred 
to the memory of Ali. 

Some clafles of the Schiahs believe that AH was an incarna- 
tion of the deity, who perceiving they lay, the million which had 
been delegated on Mahomet to be incomplete, affumed the perfon 
of this khaliph, for the purpofe of fixing the Moflem faith and 
power on a firmer bafis. The Schiahs have imbibed ftrong reli- 
gious prejudices, are more inflamed with the zeal of devotion, and 
confequently lefs tolerant to the other feels than the Soonis. In 
Perfia, they do not permit a Sooni to eat at their board, and in 
common language, without provocation or laeat of temper, they 
call him an infidel. But in what light, dear Sir, will you view a 
numerous and a civilized people, who have produced writings that 
would exalt the name of the moft polilhed nations, yet in folemn 
deliberate expreffion, imprecate God's wrath five times a day, on 
the fouls and allies of three men who never did them an injury, 
and who in tfceir day, advanced the empire of Mahomet to a high 
pitch of glory and power. Not appeafed with uttering the keened 
reproaches againft the memory of thefe khaliphs, they pour a tor- 
rent of abufe on every branch of their families, male and female, 
lower even than the ieventh generation. I have feen their imagina- 
tion toitured with inventing terms of reproach on thefe men and 
their pofterity, and commit verbally every ait «f lewdnefs with 


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their wives, daughters, and the progeny down to the prefent day. 
The Soonis, though aware of this unvaried ceremony of execrating 
the memory of men, whorri they have been long taught to hold iii 
reverence, and that they themfelves are itigmatized as infidels, do 
not even, when fully empowered, intemperately refertt this perfe- 
cting fpirit of the Perfians. 

* In the divifion of Khorafenj fubject to the Afghan empire, 
the Perfians enjoy a fair portion^ of civil and religious liberty, 
and are rarely treated with infults. . 

In noticing the more liberal*: opinions of the Soonis, in the 
practice of their religion, I am brought to the recollection of 
an occurrence, which places this fact in a confpicuous point of 
view. : vmI : > •' 

An Armenian merchant from Ifpahan, accompanying an ad- 
venture of feme valud, came -to tfce karavanfera in Kabul, 
where I lodged } a*d though five of his countrymen were on 
the fpbt, the other reftdents being Jew, Mahometans and Hin- 
doos, not one of them advanced to givtf him welcome of an offer 
of afliftanee $ and to augment his embarraflSnenr, all the apart- 
ments of thi fcrauce were occupied. In this^redicament flood 
the Armenian, and he muft have Jain in th& ftreet, hail not a 
Turk invited this forlorn Chriftian into his own apartment; 
and he fed him alfo at his own board. One of the Armenian 
tribe, after forae days, taking fhame, perhaps from the Maho- 
metan' example, 4 or expecting fome advantage from the cargoc 

t - : ; i ft r 2 of 


of his countryman, tendered him a part of his habitation, 
which the ftranger at firft refufed ; nor did he accept the invi- 
tation, until ferioufly admonimed of the crime of forming ib 


clofe a connection with an infidel. 

It is now time to revert to my own (lory, and in form 
you, that it had been my firft intention to have proceeded from 
Herat to Refhd, the principal town of the Ghilan province, 
which lies a few miles inland from Inzellec, a Ruffian factory 
on the border of the Cafpian fea. It is a computed journey of 
fcventy days, of about twenty miles each, from this city to 
Reflid,* but the road which leads through the lefler Irak,f has 
a deviating courfe from the direct line. 

Being informed by the Armenians of Herat, that Ruffian 
veffels navigate along the coaft of Mazandcran, to which a 
ftraight track lay from hence, though not much frequented 
from being fubject to the depredation of the Turcoman Tartars* 
I was refolved to purfue this route, at once direct and wholly 
unknown to European travellers* 

A kafilah being about to proceed to Turfhifb, a town 
lying in the direction of Mazanderan, I made an agreement 
with the director for a conveyance j but with a confidential 

* From Herat to the town of Jubbus, a route of fifteen days, thence to Ycrd 
twent -five, to Caflun ten, and a fifteen days journey to Kefhd. 

f There are two provinces of Irak, the lefler and greater} the latter, termed 
Irak Axeem, of which Bagdat is the capital, chiefly depends on Turkifo and Arabian 


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ftipulation, that I was to be received in a Mahometan cha- 
racter; and the better to guard againft a difcovery of my per- 
ion, I took the name of an Arab, a people little known in this 
part of Perfia, and the knowledge of whofe language is confined 
only to fome of the more learned priefts. 

Some days before my departure from Herat, an Afghan Seid 
came into my apartment, and perceiving in the courfc of conver- 
fation that I was a Chriftan, he exclaimed with fenfible emotions 
of joy, that he had now obtained a favorable opportunity of re- 
venging the grievous injuries fuftained by many of his holy ancef- 
tors at the hands of infidels, and that unlefs I paid a fine of five 
hundred rupees,* I mult repeat the creed of Mahomet and be 
circumcifed. Pretending an ignorance of the purpofe of this de- 
mand, I carried the feid, with a mifchievous intention I confefs, 
to the next quarter, where the Armenian corps, four in number, 
were then affembled, and requefted the principal of them, who 
fpoke the Perfian language with fluency, to explain the fubftance 
of the feid's demand ; and this was precifely the point to which I 
wanted to reduce the queftion. When the hungry Afghan per- 
ceived, that inftead of one Christian he had found five, his exul- 
tation had no bounds. He fwore by his beard, that we (hould all 
incur the fine or circumcifion. Oh ! what a glorious fight, cried 

• Such pecuniary affeflment is termed Jayzcah, an 1 is occaGonally levied in Ma- 
hometan countries* on thofc who do not profcfs the faith of Mahomet. 

r * 



he, toil! T»e difplayed to our prophet, when thefe hardened infidels, 
renouncing their hercfy and impurities, (hall become a portion of 
the faithful : what a triumph to our holy religion ! The expe- 
dient which I had adopted, though not a fair, was for me a for- 
tunate one ; as the controverfy, which became ferious, was now 
more equal. The feid called loudly on the Mahometans in the 
name of the prophet, to aflift in compelling the enemies of hfl 
religion either to embrace it, or by adminiftrating to the wants of 
his defcendants, contribute to its fupport ; the Perfian refidents of 
the karavanfera endeavoured to affuage the Afghan's intemperance ; 
but they quickly withdrew all interpofition, on being told that 
the toleration of their do&rine was a greater indulgence, than 
the maintenance of their execrable tenets deferved* The feid 
experiencing however more obftinate refiftance from the Chrif. 
tians than he had expected, it was evidently feen, that however ar- 
dent might have been bis zeal for the advancement of religion* he 
was not the lefs mindful of his temporal welfare $ and permitting 
himfclf, after difplaying great powers in this holy war, to be 
foothed by the ftippliant infidels, he withd rcw his threats for a 
trifling Aim of money ; far difproportioned to the firft demand. 
And here I mud obferve, that when I faw the refolute and judi* 
cious manner in which the principal Armenian conduced his (hare 
of the conflict, I felt a compun&ion for having involved him in 

fo ferious an embarraflment. 

• . • ...... . , 

At Herat I found, in two karavanferas, about* one hundred 


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Hindoo merchants, chiefly natives of Moultan, who by the main- 
tenance of a brifk commerce, and extending a long chain of 
credit, have become valuable fubjefts to the government i but dis- 
couraged by the infolcnt and often oppreffive treatment of the Per- 
fians, they are rarely induced to bring their women into this 
country. When the Hindoos crofs the Attock, they ufually put 
on the drefs of a northern Afiatic j being feldom feen without a 
long cloth coat and a high cap. Some Jewifh traders refide alfo at 
Herat, where they are accufed of praftifing all that fyltem of chi- 
cane, to which their tribe is fo notorioufly addicted in the weftern 
world. Being habituated to the manners of upper Aria, and con- 
vedant in moft of its languages, the Jews and Armenians mix 
with little perfonal inconveniency in Mahometan focieties. 

The leading cuftoms of the various nations of Afia arc fi- 
milar, or but weakly diverfified. When they fit, the legs are 
eroded or bent under themj they perform topical ablutions be- 
fore and after meals, at which no knife or fpoon is ufed, un- 
lefs the diet be wholly liquid ; they invariably adopt the like 
modes of performing natural evacuations. And all the hair of 
the body is (haved, except that of the beard j yet this laft ufage 
is more peculiar to upper Afia, where likewife all degrees of 
people cover the head ; affixing the idea of indecency to its 
being bare ; and they never enter an apartment covered with a 
carpet, without pulling off their fhoes. 

On taking leave of the Armenians, I could not help obferv- 


ing, perhaps unfeafonably, that inftead of contributing to my 
affiftance, in a land where our left already experienced many 
grievances, they had considerably increafed them, by withholding 
even the inferior offices of humanity ; but that I cordially for- 
gave a treatment which was to be afcribed to the excefs of 
caution conftitutionally inherent to their tribe. The principal 
Armenian earneftly urged me to open myfclf to him, and dif- 
clofe the myftery which appeared in my character. It was not 
in reafon, he faid, to believe that motives of curiofity, as I al- 
ledgcd, could have induced me to incur fo much fatigue, danger, 
and expenfe, which were only to be compenfated by the prof- 
peft of gain, or a pilgrimage to Jerufalem. But the Arme- 
nians, faid he, are now the only vifitors of the facred tomb, 
and indeed the only pure Chriftians now exifting. He was of 
opinion, in (hort, that my ftory was a counterfeit, and con- 
cluded by aflerting that I was a jewel-merchant, or a fpy. I 
endeavoured to explain, that among the natives of Europe, it 
was a common ufage to vifit foreign countries ; where an ob- 
fervance of the manners and arts of various people, improved 
the undcrltanding, and produced a raoie extenfive knowledge 
of mankind; and that a frequent intercourfe with nations of 
different cuftoms and religious opinions, taught them to {hake 
off domeftic prejudice, and to behold all men with the eye of 
common affection. To this language, which he had probably 
never before heard, he lillened with an air of vacant wonder } 


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but, as the doftrine did not fquare with his fcntimcnts of the 
world, he ultimately ticated it with contempt. Wifhing me 
however a better journey, he faid, than my plan promifed. 

On the evening of the 22d of November, I left Herat, and 
halted that night at Alum Guffour Chufhmah,* three quarters 
of a furfung. Here let me again crave your indulgence for 
the copious felf narration already impofed on you, and for that 
which I fear is yet to come. But what can I do ? northern 
Perfia is at this day, equally void of events as of letters, and 
has but few monuments of grandeur. You muft therefore ex- 
tend a large portion of patience over thefe communications, and 
by permitting me to fpeak of my felf, the favorite amufement of 
all travellers, you will make me a fufficient recompenfe for all the 
little chagrins, which I incurred, and fome folitary hours which 
I palled in the courfe of my journey. 

The kafilah director, Aga Ali, and his family which con- 
fided of his mother, wife and a fervant, having confented that 
1 fliould be received among them, in the character of an Arab, 
going on a pilgrimage to Mufchid, I joined the party at an 
appointed place, whither every perfon reforted, except the fe- 
males of our family •, on whofc heads, and indeed all parts of 
them, many an indecent reproach was thrown. There was no 
mortal ill, which thefe women did not deferve to fed ; but, 

• Chufhmah in the Pcrfic, fignifies a n.tural fountain. 

Vol. II. S when 

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when women were concerned in any undertaking, what good 
could refult, exclaimed all the enraged Mahometans. Night 
approaching, the kafilah moved and left AH to efcort the ladies, 
in which fervice I was alfo retained. On their arrival he be- 
gan to utter fome angry language j but it foon became mani- 
fest that we were members of a female government, which was 
conducted by the mother of Ali. She feemed in her manners, 
not unlike the Afghan lady, whom I heretofore endeavoured to 
celebrate, but had lefs fiercenefs and decifion ; the deficiency I 
prefume, arofe from the constitutional difference between the 
tempers of an Afghan and a Perfian ; for my new dame evin- 
ced the fame thirft after fupreme fway, but exercifcd it with 
more mildnefs. Ali remaining at the town gate to make fome 
toll payments, difpatched the ladies and me under charge of fome 
of his aflbciates, who perceiving our progrefs to be very flow 
and the night far advanced, left us with little ceremony. When 
Ali arrived, he expreffed much refentment at the fcandalous de- 
fertion of his friends, and many thanks for my attention } though 
I could hear him murmur at the indecency of Mahometan wo- 
men being entrufted to the charge of an infidel. But Ali's ho- 
nor might have remained fafe, in the moft intemperate quarter 
of the world : and for my part, I was fo grievoufly loaded by 
a heavy mufquet, which he had given me to carry, that had his 
fpoufe been a Venus, I would not have looked at her. No ap- 
prehenfion now cxifted of a fcolding nurfe, a crying child, or a 



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fanatic difputant; or indeed of any thing which could actually 
offend ; for my prefent aflbciate was a bag of rice, from whofe 
good neighbourhood, I anticipated much fatisfaclion. 

On the evening of the 24th, moved from the Chufhmah, and 
arrived the next morning at Dhey Soorch, four furfungs. Some 
little cultivation was feen, but the general face of the country 
bore the fame wild inhofpitable afpecr, as in the eaftern quar- 
ter of KhoraGan. The benefits attached to my new character, 
were now confpicuoufly teftified. I was from my fuppofed feci, 
entitled Hadji, and much courted by all the paffengers, efpecially 
when the given purpofe of my journey was understood. No 
perfon in the defcription of a Chriftian, fliould attempt to mal^e 
a paflage through this part of Perfia } fliould it through a train 
of favourable events be accomplifhed, he will be harrafled and 
defrauded, even on a principle of religion, and ever infulted 
with impunity. The attempt indeed I think impracticable, and 
liable to fubjecT: the adventurer to imminent danger. 

On the 26th, at the Pool, or bridge of Skebo, three and a 
half furfungs, in an uncultivated country. This bridge built 
of brick and mortar, ftands over a fmall river whofe name I 
could not learn, running to the fouthward or left, and is ford- 
able at mod feafons. 

On the 27th, at Corian, a large village, four and a half 
furfungs. In this neighbourhood, I faw fome windmills, for 
grinding corni they are conftrufted on the fame principles as 

S 2 thofe 


thofe of Europe, but inftead of canvas wing?, broad leaved flags 
are fubftituted. The toll gatherer at Corian affecls to obferve 
a peculiar vigilance in the execution of his office, which he 
faw occafion to excrcife on me. 

Passengers, proceeding to the vveftward, ufually procure 
a paflport at Herat j but being averfe to a mode, which might 
have led to inconvenient explanations, I did not apply for this do- 
cument. The officer, though glad of the omiflion, held out the 
utter impoflibility of palling without the fignature of govern- 
ment, and argued with much delicacy on the crime of difbbe- 
dience. But feeling fome of my money in his hand, he ob- 
ferved that my cafe admitted a favorable conftrucftion } that 
I was an Arab, and a pilgrim of the holy tomb of Mufchid. 
He would therefore relax a little, he fcid, in fo good a caufe. 
To put money in thy purfe, is as necefTary in Khorafan as it 
was in Venice, with the difference that there, the more deco- 
rated the garb, the greater refpecl was fhewn to the perform 
whereas in Afia, the fecurity and the comforts of life, often 
depend on a wary concealment of wealth, and all its appendages. 

The complaints of Afiatic travellers againfl: a camel driver, 
are not lefs frequent than thofe of marine paflengers in our 
country, againft the matter of a fhip, and oftentimes with the 
like want of juil caufe. Men under reftraint and deprived of 
accuftomed amufements, become unreaionabie in their defires 


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and fretful from the natural difappointment of vain wifhes. The 
crofs incidents which their fituation neceflarily produces, and 
which a degree of fkill might qualify, are often outrageoufly 
afcribed to their conductor. This preliminary though militat- 
ing againft myfelf, 1 thought but honeft to the exhibition of 
certain charges againft Ali the ka61ah director. The firft fliews, 
that having bargained with this Mahometan, on the payment 
of a ftipulated fum, for a conveyance to Turfhifti, he at the 
firft halting place laid me under a contribution, on a pretence 
of the extraordinary weight of my baggage, though he well 
knew, that the equipment of a mendicant, could not have been 
more (lender. This demand was no fooner adjufted, than he 
commenced another attack, not on my purfe, though that was 
weak, but on my fame, wliich was vulnerable all over. 
• Ali feeing me gene Lilly addrefled by the title of Hadji, and 
treated with a marked civility, was much mortified, and be- 
gan to lap the importance I had obtained. He whifpered to 
fome of thofe with whom I aflociated, that I was no Hadgi^ 
nor even one of the true faith. They expreffed great furprtze 
at this information, but blamed him for the difclofure, nor did 
they ever comnauukatc the ftory to the other pailengers, or abate 
ki their former attention. 

On the 29th, at Charfoorcb, feven furfungs, a ftation in an 
uninhabited country, and fupplied with one well, whole water 
was barely fufficient for the fupply of our party. 



On the 30th, at Tuifala, three and a half furfdngs, a Na- 
tion in the defert, near a well of brackiili water. 

On the ift of December, at KaufF, feven furfungs, a populous,' 
and in this country a large village, which maintains a moderate 
ti aflick with Herat, Mufchid, and Turfhifh. Markets and public 
Ihops being only feen in the cities and principal towns of Perfia 
and Afghaniftan, travellers are obliged to apply for provifions to 
the houfekeepeis, who are often unable to provide the required 
quantity. Though KaufF is a village of note, bread in no part 
of it is publickly vended, and having occafion for a three days 
fupply, I advanced the required price to a Perfian, who, after 
keeping me in waiting till midnight abfeonded. Bread and the 
cheefe of fheeps milk, when procurable, was my common fare; 
which, with a water beverage, gave me a vigor and ftrength 
equal to the daily fatigue I incurred. And when the incle- 
mency of the weather is confidered, and how broken his reft 
muft be who is carried on the back of the rougheft paced ani- 
mal that moves, thruft alfo into a crib not half his fize, and 
ftunned by the loud clamours of the drivers, you muft grant 
that no ordinary texture of conftitution is required to accom- 
pany the kafilahs in northern Perfia. 

Having witnelTed the robuft activity of the people of this 
country and Afghaniftan, I am induced to think, that the hu- 
man body may fuftain the moft laborious fervices, without the 
aid of animal food. The Afghan whofc fole aliment is bread, 


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curdled milk and water, inhabiting a climate which often pro- 
duces in one day, extreme heat and cold, fhall undergo as 
much fatigue, and exert as much ftrengtb, as the porter of 
London, who copioufly feeds on flefh meat and ale ; nor, is 
he lubjeft to the like acute and obftinate diforders. It is a 
well known fact, that the Arabs of the more of the Red Sea, 
who live with little exception on dates and lemons, carry bur- 
thens of fuch an extraordinary weight, that its fpecific men- 
tion to an European ear, would feem romance. 

On the 3d of December, at Ruee, four and a half furfungs, 
a populous village, where a fall of fnow produced a change on 
the face of the land, to which I had been long a flranger. 
Halted on the 4th, on account of the infpection of fome goods 
which had been damaged by the weather. Three Perfians with 
myfflf occupied the lower part of a windmill, which our joint 
endeavours to defend from the cold, were wholly ineffectual* 
yet my companions feemed little affected by it. They were 
horfemen, and having no attendants, were obliged to clean their 
cattle, and go in fearch of forage, fuel and provifions } thefe offices 
they performed with alacrity, nor did they once flirink from 
the boiiterous drifts of fnow and a north wind that, I verily 
believe, mull have fwept every mountain-top in Tartary. My 
body, which a refidence of many years in India, had greatly re- 
laxed, and a recent ficknefs enfeebled, was open to every touch 
of thofc rude blafts, and 1 faw with mortification a noith Bri- 


ton, fattening himfelf from a climate, which imparted vigor to 
an Afiatic. My aflbciates had been horfemen in the fervice of 
Timur Shah, but difgufted at his ill payments, they had retired, 
and were returning to their families at Nifhabor. 

On the 5th, at Say Day, five and a half furfungs, a fmall 
fortified village, whofe adjacent lands extending in a valley, 
itemed to be well cultivated. 

On the 6th, at Afhkara, five furfungs, a fmall fortified vil- 
lage. A great quantity of fnow fell on our arrival at this 
place, and the weather became fo tempeftuous, that the kafilah 
could not proceed. Our party went into the fort to feek (hcl- 
ter, and after earned intreaties, were conducted into a fmall 
dark room, barely capable of defending us againft the ftorm, 
which had now fct in with violence. The inhabitants aware 
of our diftrefs, furni filed an abundant fupply of fuel, which be- 
came as ncceflary to our exiftence as food •, but when the cold 
was a little qualified, we experienced an urgent want of pro- 
vifions ; not an article of which was to be procured at Afhkara. 
This dilemma difmayed the ftouteft of us, and became the more 
alarming from the apparently fixed ftate of the weather. Yet, 
fuch cordial plcafurcs are inherent in fociety, that though pent 
up in a dark hovel, which afforded but a flimfy flielter againft 
the mounds of fnow furioufly hurled againft it, our good hu- 
mour with each other, and an ample fupply of firing, produced 
ehcerfulnefs and content 


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*c Ok ft oft our aflbciates; who had received a more than ordinary 
ettucatioiv>«nd had a tfafte for poetical literature, am u led us with 
reading. Jamis'srfrory of jbfeph and Zulcicha,* which for its fcenes 
<tf wondrous pathetic arfventnre, and the luxuriant genius of the 
poet, is thinly adapted: foften-4he rigors of a winter's day; 
Nor .was our companion deficient in accompanying the reading 
with that energetic emphafis and deep nafal tone, which in the 
call is thought highly ornamental, to the recitation of poetry. 

As our plcafurcs and our forrows cxift largely in the ima- 
gination, and as at this period, my ideas did not wander beyond 
the circle of my refidence, I felt comforts in my prefcht fituation, 
equal perhaps to the enjoyments of the moft refined focicties. 
How often in the fervor of my heart, have I prayed for the 
fortitude which is faid to have actuated the ftoic fchool, that I 
might Ihackle, or at leafr qualify the paflions that are continu- 
ally precipitating us into dependance and embarraflments, and 
eftablirti within myfelf a refource for condufting all the opera- 
tions of life. But the wifh was futile, nor would the gratifi- 
cation of it accord with the oeconomy of human nature. 

The inhabitants of Aihkara were now bufily employed in 
commemorating the death of HiuTcyn, the fecond fon of Ali, who 
was flain at Karibullah, in the vicinity of Bagdat, where a monu- 

* The Patriarch of JEgypt. Zulekhi 7s the nunc the Arabia to the 
wife of Potiphur. 

il>. r 

Vol. II. 




ment has been erected to his memory, and whithef the Schiabs 
aumeroufly refort, in the firft ten days of the Mahometan month 

Mohurrum,* to offer up their prayers. Huffin, the elder brother, 
was poifoned by fome female machinations ; but the celebration of 
this event, which is noticed at a different period of the year, does 
not produce that tumultuous lamentation, and olten dangerous 
effects which accompany the memory of Huffcvn's fate. 


Karribullahee ; which clafles next after 
Mufchidce, an appellation given to thole who vifit the lhrine of 
Mufchid. The pilgrims of Karibullah make grievous complaints 
of the infults and oppreffion of the Turks. Yet it would feem 
that perfecution inflames and invigorates their fenfe of this reli- 
gious duty, fothat it is merely rated by the extent . 
danger u occurs ; ror i nave Known a ocnian 
or tnc oanges, to proitratc nimitit at 
feoffs and rigor of the Turks. To prevent the Afghans from 
throwing a ridicule on their obfervance of the Mohurrum cere- 
mony, which happened during our halt at Afhkara, the Perfians 
fhut the gate of the fort, and commemorated the day by beating 
their breafts, and chanting in a mournful tone, the praifcs of 

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In India, though the proportion of the feft of All is final!, 
and Huflcyn only known bufc by his name, this occafion never 
fails to excite extravagant tokens of grief and enthufiafm, and it 
often happened, that the mafquerade mourners, impelled by a vio- 
lent agitation of their minds and bodies, and heated alfo by intox- 
ication, commit defperate outrages. But the fart is, that all the 
natives of India Hindoos and Mahometans are wondrouflv at- 
traded by public exhibitions, and thofe of the molt glaring kind. 
Though any external commemoration of Hufieyn's death is re- 
pugnant to the doctrine of the Soonis, thofe of India cannot refift 
fo alluring an offer of gratifying their love of fhew and noife. 
Many of the Hindoos alfo, in compliance with this propenfity, and 
the ufage of their Mahometan matters, contribute largely to aug- 
ment the Mohurrum proceflions. I have heard Mr. Schwartz, 
the Chriitian mifflonary on the coaft of Coromandcl, as pious a 
prieft as ever preached the gofpel, and as good a man as ever 
adorned fociety, complain that many of his Indian profelytes, dif- 
gufted at his churchc's want of glitter and buftlc, take an early op- 
portunity of going over to the Popim communion, where they are 
congenially gratified by the painted feencry, by relics, charms, and 
the blaze of fire-works. From Schiahs and Soonis, Proteftants 
and Roman Catholics, I am forcibly brought to the bufincfe of 
the day. It is the roguery of a camel-driver, on whom, (hould 
you ever travel in Perfm, never put your faith. Ali now gravely 
informed me, that he meant to proceed on the next day towards 

T 2 Nifha- 


Nifliabor, but that h6 would provide a conveyance for mcto Tur*. 
fliifh on an afs. It was in vain to tflk of engagements j thd injuftiae 
of forfeiting them, or the fum I had advanced j and had not one^f 
my aflbciates pleaded my caufc with a fpiiit that intimidated him, 
Ali would have laughed at my plea. • '.-w 

On the ioth, the itorm having abated, the kafriah moved be- 
fo i c dtiy Im c»iKj unci ui i ivcd it\ tile evening &t I~Ioonticci «ici) fix dnd 
*x liali fuifungs, ci Tni3.ll vilLigc, fituate m 3 ciutuatcd plain, 
watered by many rivulets. Ali, with an Ul grace, procured for me 
one fide of a camel, the other being poifed by a bag of rice, con- 
iigned to the market of Turfiiifh ; my companions, who had con- 
tinued to treat me with much kindnefs, proceeded from this Na- 
tion to Nifliabor, which lies about feventy miles to the north-weft 
of Hoondeabad. i Kx .i 

Thb divifion of Khorafan, which has been annexed to the 
Afghan empire, feems to be wholly entrufted to the management 
of Perlians, who though a conquered people, live in the enjoy- 
ment of every right, civil or religious, which could have been 
granted to them under their own princes. We met a party this 
day, returning from the army which Timur Shah had lent to be- 
fiece Muichid. This citv. on which depends a fmall tract of ter- 
ritory, is governed by Shah Rock, a grandfon of Nadir Shah, and 
I believe, the only branch of that prince's family #iow in exiftence. 

Shah Rock is the offspring of Mirza Kuli, the eldeft fon of 
Nadir Shah, by a daughter of the Sultan Huffeyn, who was driven 


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ft* the throne of Perfia by Mahmoud the Afghan. After Nadir's 
death,* the empire fell to the pofleffion of Ali, his nephew, who 
cut off all the defendants of Nadir, except Shah Rock then a 
youth, whom he intended to raile nominally to the throne, mould 
the Perfians mew any ftrenuous oppofition to his government. 
But , being in a fhort time after his accefllon, encountered by his 
brother, who by liberal donations had collected a ftrong force, 
Ali was defeated and taken prifoner in the field. Ibrahim, though 
at the head of a numerous army, and poflerTing the fouthcrn pro- 
vinces of the empire, faw the impractibility of attaining the do- 
minion of Perfia, whilft Shah Rock, who was much beloved in 
Khorafan, held the city of Mufchid, where a large portion of the 
treafures of Nadir were depofited. 

That he might the better fucceed in his defign of fcizing the 
perfon of Shah Rock, his only rival, he declared this prince, by 
a lineal defcent from Nadir and the race of Soft, to be the right- 
full heir of the kingdom, and by public deputation invited him to 
Ifpahan, that he might there be inverted with the diadem of his 
anceftors. The adherents of Shah Rock, averfc from entrufting 
him to fo powerful and fufpicious a charge, made an ad van*, 
tageous ufe of Ibrahim's profeffiom, by inftalling with the ne- 
ceilary ceremonials, the young prince at Mufchid. Ibrahim, 

* Nadir Shah was aflaiEnated at the age of fixty years, mar Mufchid, n the 
mouth of June, 1747. 





bafled in the defign of drawing Shah Rock to Ifpahan, caufe* 
tomfolf to be proclaimed king, and proceeded to reduce the 
chiefs of Khorafan. But fquandering his trea Cures by an in- 
di Ten m m ate profufion, and having dtfgufted his troops by an 
injudicious choice of officer*, he was betrayed by them, and to- 
gether with Ali, then his prifoner, delivered to the mirtiften of 
Shah Rock, who put the brothers to death. 

About this period appeared, it is fakJ, a defcendant of the 
ancient Soft family, who had efcaped the maflacre of the times, 
and improving to bis purpofes the diffraction of the kingdom 
find the minority of a young prince, he fuborned, by a largefs, 
and cxtenfive promifes, a party in the court of fofufehid, and 
having procured at a fecret hour admittance into the palace of 
Mulchid, he fcized the perfon of Shah Rock and deprived him 
of fight. The a& was foon puniftied by the death of the 
perpetrator j but Shah Rock, cut off by this Calamity from the 
fcope of empire, was contented to remain at Mufchid, in the 
fwfleflion of a very limitted revenue. 

He has two fons, Nadir Mirza, and Wulli Neamut, who 
ore waging againft each other an inveterate predatory war. 
* Wulli Neamut being driven from the city, has colle&ed a body 
of cavalry, which in Khorafan are ever ready to rove in queft 
of plunder, and are at this time levying a general contribution on 
every village, karavan, and traveller, within his power or reach ; 
not fparin^ even the pilgrims. After an ineffectual effort to 


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enter the city, he folicitcd the afliftance cf Timur Shah, who 
lent a foaall array to join him and bcfiege Mufchid. But their 
knowledge of artillery is fo limited, that the Afghans after the 
campaign of a year, have only been enabled to (heighten the 
fupplies of the befieged. 

When the extenfive conquefts of the Afghans in Perfia are 
conlidered, the fpacious empire which they have fo recently 
founded, and their general reputation for military prowefc, I 
felt a feniible difappointment at feeing their armies, compofed of a 
tumultuous body, without order or common difcipline. It is feen, 
however, that they were good foldiers under Ahmed Shah, who 
himfelf, a prince of confpicuous military talent and a decerning 
patron of merit, was empowered to give his troops that force 
which they conftitutionally pollefs. Yet even under this famed 
leader, the Afghans, impetuous, and haughty from the form of 
their government, were never an obedient folcjiery } and the fevere 
encounters which Ahmed Shah experienced from the Sicques* 
when he ultimately evacuated the Punjab, are attributed to the 
defertion of his troops, who already enriched by the plunder of 
India, retired in large bodies to their own country. 

Though far ihort of the opinion I had formed of it, the Af- 
ghan army is much fuperior to that of Perfia at the prefent day,. . 
whj long deprived of a monarch, and fubje&ed either to a foreign 
yoke or the prtcauous authority of petty chieftains, have loft v\ih 
theu- putnotiun tJ»e fyiiit of enterprize. It appears that the Per- 


fians have been'ever ill acquainted with the ufe offlre arms, ifnc* 
that their grand fuccefles were obtained by the formidable onfet of 
their cavalry. Little other proof indeed is required of their want 
of (kill, than a review of Nadir's long fiege of Bagdad, which, 
though a fortification of mean tenabilit^r, baffled all his efforts. 
The matchlock-piece is the common weapon of a Perfian foot fol- 
dier, except in the province of Auderbeijan, and in fome parts of 
Shirvan and Dhaghiftan, where the ufe of the fpring lock mufquet 
has been adopted from the Turks ; but the ridicule which ha* 
been thrown on this praclife by the body of the people, will pro- 
bably long prevent its general introduction. The feverity of the 
winter feafon, has now obliged the Afghan army to retire into 
quarters, and afforded a temporary relief to the inhabitants of 
Mufchid, who began to feel a want of provifions. 

The young chief of this city, in defiance of the reprefentations 
of Ins clergy, has coined into current fpecie fuch of thofe orna- 
ments with which the oftentatious zeal of the Schiahs had for two* 
centuries been decorating the tomb of Mooza Bcza, as had been 
preferved from former depredations. Even Nadir, the avowed foe 
of priefthood, made his offering at the Ihrine of Mufchid. But 
his defendant fearing that the whole fabric would fall into the 
unhallowed hands of his enemies, has wifely facrificed a part, to 
prevent a total deftruclion. Yet his efforts will probably be fruit- 
kfs; for if the Afghans return to the fiege, they will derive a con- 
futable aid from the low ftate of the Mufchid treafury, which I 


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am informed is nearly confumed. While the priefts inveigh 
with fufficient acrimony againft the facrilegious fcizure of Na- 
dir Mirza, there is no limit to their invectives againft his bro- 
ther, on whom they deprecate the fevereft divine vengeange, for 
calling in the inveterate foes of their religion, to the destruction 
of the only facred city left in the pofTefllon of the feet of Ali. 

On the nth, at Fidgeroot, a fmall fort, three and a half 
furfungs, fituate in a cultivated and generally a plain country, 
in whofe vicinity are feen many fortified villages. 

On the 12th, at Dochabad, four and a half furfungs, a 
populous open village, protected by an adjoining fort, and dif- 
tinguiflied by a manufacture of raw file. The diftri&s of Do-/ 
chabad form the the weftern boundary of the dominion of Ti- 
mur Shah, which in a direction from Kammire to this place,* 

occupy by a grofs computation, a fpace of Britifh 

miles. Were this fpacious extent of territory, governed by as 
vigorous and enterprizing a prince, as it is peopled by a brave 
and hardy race of men, the entire conqueft of Perfia would not 
be of difficult attainment. But Timur Shah inherits no por- 
tion of his father's genius, and his power is feldom fecn or 
felt, except fome objett of wealth, and of fafe accomplifhment 
be held out to his avarice. The cxiftence of the emperor is 

• It is to be noted, that fome petty chieffhips lying between Kafomire and the In* 
jus, are held by independent Afghans. 

Vol. II. 




then felt, and for the day, dreaded. Here I am checked by ft 
fear that thefe opinions may be thought prefumptuous and dog- 
matical, and that from flender oppo< tunitics of acquiring infor- 
mation, I have decided with an unwarrantable preremptorinefs 
on the chara&er of a prince, in whofe country I have been but 
a mere fojourner. I have only to urge, that the language which 
I have held, is prevalent in the country, and its truth ftrongly 
marked in all the operations of government, which come be- 
fore the public eye. 

On the 13th, at Koot, fix furfungs, a village dependent on 
tne chief of Turfhifli. From the vicinity of Dochabad, a wafte 
extends to this place, on which is neither an inhabitant, or the 
kaft token of vegetation ; and it (hould feem that nature had 
interpofed this barren (and to prechide the afiaults of war, and 
even difcourage a difpoiition to focial intercourfe. To the north, 
extends a lofty chain of mountains covered with mow,* and 
the other quarters (hew a track of land, thinly marked with 
craggy hills. 

The proprietor of the camel on which I rode, had carried 
me to Koot, his place of refidence, fearing to carry his wares, 
principally compofed of rice, to the town of Turfhifli, leaft the 
chief mould take it at an arbitrary price. He told me, that 

• A road leads over thefe mountains to- Mufchid, which is faid to be one hun- 
dred miles norih-wcft from Turfhifli, and about thirty miles to the northward of 


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his cattle were not deftined for that place, whither I might 
purfue my way in the beft manner I liked, except on his ca- 
mel. The fort of Turihifh being at no greater diftance than 
two miles, I would have proceeded without hefitation, could 
I have carried my baggage, which though of little value, was 
too heavy a load for me. After much intreaty, it was tran- 
fported at my charge, on the back of an afs,* to the kara- 
vanfera at Turfhifh } there I found every apartment occupied, 
but the application of a fmall piece of money to the gate- 
keeper, who regulates the diftribution of quarters, introduced me 
to a lodging, occupied by only one perfon. The ftranger accofted 
me with evident tokens of joy, obferving, that the folitary life he 
had patted at Turmiih, was very tirefome to him, and that he 
expected a cordial relief from my company. This reception 
was happily adapted to my purpofe, and pro mi fed my Maho- 
metan character a fair introduction. It was agreed that a joint 
Board mould be kept, that my aflbciate, yet weak from a late 
ficknefs, mould prepare the victuals, and that I fhould furnifh 
the water, and a laborious duty it was, there being no good 
water at a nearer diftance than a mile. 

Here I muft inform you, that this was by no means a 
degrading duty, and is performed by travellers of a rank much 

• The Periian affes are of a ftrong make, and much ufed by dealers in final! and or- 
dinary wares. I have feen the conveyance of large parties, confifling of ihofe animals, 
which appear to be more active and endure more fatigue than thole of England. 

U 2 fupe- 


fupcrior to that I held, and alfo that few travellers in this coun- 
try of whatever condition exhibit any appearance of wealth, tear- 
ing the oppreflions of government, and the licentious exactions 
of the toll gatherers. Even men of opulence do not carry a 
fa van t. 

Previously to the commencement of a journey, focieties 
are formed at the place of rendezvous, where the different offices 
are allotcd to each ; the moft robuft generally provide the water ; 
fome are employed in the kitchen, while others go in queft of pro- 
vifions and provender for the cattle. Should no prior opportunity 
have offered to fix fuch a fcheme, it is adjufted on the firft halting 
day, and preferved on a cordial footing throughout the journey. 
It is not to be inferred that certain attentions are not alfo fhewn 
to the men of rank, who attach themfelves to thefe parties. 
When known, and they are foon diftinguiflied, they become by 
common confent exempt from the more laborious occupations, 
and all aged perfons arc invariably treated with a rcfpectful 
indulgence. My prefent companion, whofe name I never knew 
or alked, was overcaft with a fixed melancholy referve i nor, 
could I extract from him other information, than that he had laft 
come from Aflerabad. But he ftudioufly avoided giving me any 
intelligence of the affairs of that province, efpecially of the Rut 
fian trade there which I much defired to know, and of which 
lie mult have been informed j and though he feemed to like 
my company or perhaps my afliftance, he foon became to me an 


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nnpleafant colleague. In a few day, his departure to Herat 
left me fole tenant of a dark folttary lodging, with the advan- 
tage, and with the privilege of being unrefervedly admitted into 
the fociety of the karavanfera, as a pure Mahometan. 

In the courfc of vacancies, I got pofleflion of a more com- 
modious apartment, in the corner of which I found at firft en- 
trance, a decent looking old man fmoking his pipe. On en- 
quiry it appeared, that he was then wholly at large but that 
his ufual fubfiftance arofe from vending certain fpells, which 
were powerfully efficacious in conferring every fpecies of worldly 
happinefs, and confequently in the preclufion of all evil. Yet 
he was willing to (hut up his book, he faid, fliould any other 
profpect of maintainance he held out. This being the perfon I 
was in fearch of, I made him a cordial tender of my afliftance, 
and invited him to a participation of my fare. The offer came 
to him, poor man, at a convenient feafon. It was now the depth 
of winter, and he honeftly confefTed to me, that his charms had 
fo bad a run at TurfhiuS, that even a fcanty meal was earned 
with difficulty. 

The mollah, which was the title he had derived from his 
profeflional fkill, with a natural good temper, had acquired an 
accommodating difpofition j he was all things to all men ; and 
he found a full exercife of thofe qualities during our aftocia- 
tion. The little regularity I obferved in our Jo;neftic fyirem, 
efpecially in the hours of eating, was fubjcc"t of frequent com- 


plaint to the molLh, who applied to the bufuiers of the kitchen, 
in which he had attained an eminent proficiency, with an active 
attention ; nor was Sancho more attached to its produce ; and 
he alfo reprehended my difrcgard to thofe diflies which he moft 
favored. His cenfure generally conveyed an ejaculation of fur- 
prize, at the neglcft of a concern the moft important to man, 
•or at my bad tafte, which he alledgcd, muft have been vitiated 
in the courfe of my journeying through barbarous countries. 

Having enjoyed during my acquaintance with this mollah 
fo many conveniencies, and fo pleafing a quiet of mind, I often 
review the fcene with fenfiblc emotions of pleafure. For my 
Jftrength, as well as my fpirits, had been much cxhanfted by 
the fatigues of the road, and various moleftations neceffarily 
incident to a traveller of my defcription. The cold being in- 
tenfe and the country covered with fnow, it became expedient 
in the firft inftance, to lay in a flock of fuel, which is a dear 
commodity at Turflufli, that we might at leaft communicate 
an external heat to our bodies ; for our creed precluded any in- 
terior cordial, nor durft we even mention its name. But we 
were moderately recreated by a wholefome diet, large fires, a 
clean hearth, with plenty of Perfian tobacco, which is of a moft 
excellent kind * When I have contemplated the progrefs of 

P That produced at Tubbus, a town about one hundred miles to the fouth-weft of 
Turfhilb, is efteemed the beft in Pcrfia. 


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my aflbciate in his culinary occupation, in mixing with care 
and earneftnefs the ingredients of a hodge-podge, ftirring it vr- 
goroufly with a large wooden fpoon, blowing and arranging the 
fire, till his eyes were red, I have been prompted to compare 
him to a Pruffian feijeant, tmmerfed in the fury and enthufiafm 
of drilling a fquad of recruits, and cudgelling into their bodies 
all the ability of their brains. Nor could one of our minute 
virtuofos have been more inflated with pride at the difcovery of 
a new fpecies of fnail, than the mollah, in demonftrating the 
qualities of fome favorite dilh. 

The excellent fervices of my companion now left me at 
liberty to walk about the town, collcft information, and frequent 
the public baths. In the evening we were always at home, 
when the Mollah at the condufion of our meal, either read a 
ftory of Yufuff and Zuleicha which he did but lamely, or open- 
ing his book of fpells, he Wojuld expound the virtues of his 
noftrums, which embraced fo wide a compafs, that few difeafes 
of the mind or body could refill their force. They extended from 
recalling to the paths of virtue, the rteps of a frail wife, and 
filencing the tongue of a fcolding one, to curing chilbains, and 
deftroyihg worms. His practice he told me, had been more 
extenfive than profitable, being chiefly employed by the lower 
clafles of people ; the rich rarely fought his aid. He was me- 
ditating, he faid, which I had now obviated, a journey to Muf- 
chid, where he would have been enabled to pals the winter, a 

i do 


feafon always of anxious care to him ; as for the fummer, he 
never beftowed a thought on it. 

The duty of religion fat rather loofely on the mollah, for 
out of the five daily prayers,* he ufually ftruck off four, and 
on many days the omilTion was total. But obferving that I was 
yet more relaxed, he would gravely cenfure my negligence ; not 
that I was degraded in his opinion, but it was neceflary, he 
faid, to maintain a decorum of manners, that the people of 
the karavanfera might not make unfavourable remarks. The 
fpirit and tendency of the mollah's obfervation, when impar- 
tially confidcred, difclofcs the grand tenure by which the reli- 
gion of Mahomet is at this day held. Jt is on the daily reci- 
tal of five prayers, -J- warning as often, and a rcftriction from a 
certain food, that the Mahometan builds his hope of Paradife. 
And the reputation of fuch a perfon, in Perfia, is equal to that 
of our nun of virtue, honor, and humanity. Even to that of 
our man of fafliion. 

• The firft, a Qiort one, is faid before the break of day, the fecond on the earlieft 
appearance of light, a period ufually denominated the Wolct Nemaz, or time of prayer, 
the third about two hours before fun-fet, the fourth at the clofe of the evening, this is 
alfo termed the Wolct Nemaz, and the fifth in the courfe of the night. The fecond 
and fourth prayers are moft regularly obferved. 

t I have feen grave long bearded Mahometans, retire a few fteps from the exhibi- 
tion of a lafcivious dance, and in the fame apartmnnt kneel to their prayers, which haf- 
tily muttering, they returned to the amufemcnt. 


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On the other fide, lie that fhall neglect thefe ceremonies, 
though he may execute to an ample extent, the duties of a good 
citizen, is branded with the general mark of contumely j and 
fhould his condition of life not be fufficiently eminent to 
command refpect, he is cut off from many of the benefits of fo- 
ciety. That 1 may point out to you more fpecifically the opi- 
nion of a Mahometan on the eflential efficacy of forms, I am in- 
duced to relate an obfervation of the mollah. In fpeaking of 
an Afghan, who had himfelf accefs to the karavanfera by an 
agreeable and friendly difpofition, he faid, that he willingly fub- 
fcribed to the compafs of his moral merits, but was lorry to 
fee them vitiated by offering up his prayers with folded hands. 
Does it not aftonifti you, that the mind of a creature fo ex- 
quifitely formed by the great lord of nature, fliould have be- 
come fo ftrongly fettered by the fhackles of prejudice, fhould have 
formed ideas fo derogatory of his infinite benevolence, as to be 
fearful of approaching his altar but in certain pofitions and flec- 
tions of the body. 

Travelling once with fome Perfians on a fultry day, and 
over an ill watered country, the party unexpectedly approached a 
fniall ftream, where haftily difmounting, I drank a cup of water 
with avidity, one of the Perfians who flood near me, cryed out in 
an earned tone, while I was finilhing the draught, to nX'rve a little 
in the bottom of the veffel, and throw it on the ground with an 

Vol. II. X execra- 


execration on the memory of Yezid * On feeing that not a drop 
remained, he viewed mc with evident marks of deteftation, and 
pronounced me a kaufir. But Pcrfia has long loft her men of 
genius and philanthfophy. The day of Ferdoufi, Sadi, and Hafiz, 
is fct in barbarous darknefs j and little clfe is now written or 
liftened to, except the legends of prieft 0 , or the chimerical exploits 
of the twelve Imaums, which nearly quadrate in ftyle and matter 
with our renowned nurfery hiftories of Tom Thumb, or Jack the 
Giant-killer; though with a more pernicious effect ; for the Per- 
fian writings ftrongly tend to eternifc amongft them a rancorous 
hatred to all thofc of a different creed. 

It is recorded that the cotemporaries of Hafiz, were fo much 
offended at his bold difquifitions on the religion of the Koran, 
and witty ftii&ures on the loofe conduct of the clergy, that at 
his death, they hefitated to perform the ufual obfequics. Yet 
the later Perfians have not only acquitted Hafiz of any charge 
ef irreligion, though almoft every page of the poet refutes the 
pofition, but they aflert, that under the cloak of his fportive 
pleafurable exhortations, he defcribes the excellency of their 
faith, and the future happinefs of pious Mahometans. 

While the mollah and I were enjoying the comforts of a 
commodious apartment, and favoury melTes, made in rotation 

• The chief who flew HuHiyri the ion o£ 


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of beef, mutton, and camels flefli, on a fudden, every room of 
the karavanfera war, tumultuoufly filled by a large body of pil- 
grims * from the luriae of Mufchid. What an exuberance of 
zeal muft have animated thefe devotees ! which neither fo dif- 
tant and perilous a journey could deter, or the inclement feafon of 
the year cool. The prcfent winter was accounted more rigorous 
than had been for fome years remembered, particularly in the 
quarter of Mufchid and Niftiabor, where two of thefe pilgrims 
had perifhed in the fnow, and others had loll their limbs by the 
feverity of the froft. 

In that band, which ruined into our apartment, was a perfon 
who feemed to take the avowed lead j he was better equipped than 
bis aflbciates, and wore on his head the infignia of a hadji j-f? a 
pilgrim, who fupplied the place of a fervant, began to reconnoitre 
the room, and as foon as he had noticed its fituation, he diflodged 
without ceremony, and with much facility from one of its corners, 
the very portable chattels of our poor mollah ; and in the voice of 
authority, declared the place affigned to the ufe of the hadji, whom 
he reprefented to be of fupcrior rank and importance. 

The hadji took his feat with a folemn air, and looking haugh- 
tily around, he threw his eye on me, and immediately aiked, or. 
rather demanded my name and bufinefs. The queftion was con- 

* They were chiefly inhabitants of Tabriz, the ancient Taur*s, I believe, a town 
in the province of A$dcrbeijan. 

t laPcrua it is a ftrip of cloth commonly green, rolled on the edge of the cap. : 

X 2 veyed 

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vcyed in a manner which fully evinced the power of the interro- 
gator ; indeed I quickly faw, from the party's deference to him, the 
neceflity of obfcrving a refpccttul conduct to this fuperb Ma- 
hometan. I told him that I was an Arab, travelling to Muf- 
chid ; but judge of my confufion, when the hadji began to fpeak 
in my fuppofed language. Endeavouring to fupprefs my embar- 
raflTment at fo complete a conviction of falfity, I obferved, that 
I had aflumed the name of an Arab, for the purpofe of travel- 
ing with more fafety ; but that I was a native of Kaftimiie, 
proceeding on a mercantile concern to Mazanderan. Such {lo- 
ries, which in the caft may be defcribed by the fmoother term* 
fimulation, are in common ufe among Afiatic travellers ; and un- 
lcfs other teftimony corroborates their relations, little credit is 
given, nor is much expected. It is fufficient that their true ftory 
remains concealed. 

. This emendation of my account, produced no apparent fur- 
prize, nor any further interrogation ; and from the mode of the 
hadji's behaviour, it was evident that I had not fuffered in his 
opinion. The laft year of my life had been occupied in an in- 
varied fcene of difguife, with a language wholly fabricated to pre- 
ferve it } fo that, God forgive me, I never wanted a ready talc tor 
current ufe. I have now only to hope, that when it may be no 
longer expedient to fupport the part hitherto fo fuccefsfully main- 
tained, I (hall be enabled to throw off the cloak with all its garni- 
ture for ever. The hadji was a refident of Balfrofli, the principal 


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town of Mazanderan, where he maintained a eonfiderable traffic; 
he had joineJ the Tabrez pilgrims at Mufchid, and was now on 
the way back to his own province. The occafion of accompany- 
ing this party was not to be foregone; as few roads are of more 
dangerous pafTage, than that from Turfhifh to the Cafpian fca, 
and confcqucntly not much frequented. The hadji, to whom I 
applied for a paflage to Balfrofh, affecled to lay various obftacles 
in my way, and feeing my anxiety to proceed, he made his bargain 
conformably, that is, he ftipulated for a double amount of the 
ufual hire. 

The territory of Turfhifli, which takes in about ■ 

miles from eaft to weft, and nearly half that fpace in latitudinal 
direction, is held by Abedullah, an independant Perfian chief; he 
feems to be forty years of age, has a refpectable appearance, and 
aflumes that air of gravity which ftrongly pervades the manneis of 
the higher clafies of Mahometans. His administration is well 
liked by the people, who feem to act and fpeak very much at 
their eafe. PafTengers are never interrogated, nor is a paflport 

Adjoining to old Turfhifh, called alfo Sultanabad, which is 
of final] compafs, and furrounded with a wall, Abedulla has built 
a new town, in an angle of which ftands the karavanfera, the only 
one I have fetn in Perfia, which is nut interiorly fupplicd with 
water. The chief and his officers rciide in the new quarter, where 
is alfo held the market, which the inhabitants lay, has not been 



fo well fupplied, fincc the Afghan troops have laid wade the 
diftricti of Mufchid, and thereby impeded the traffic of this quar- 
ter of Khorafan. 

The trade of Turlhifh, arifes chiefly from the import of in- 
digo and other dyes from the weft ward, woollen cloths, and rice, 
which is fcantily produced in this vicinity, from Herat. And 
the chief article of export feems to be iron, wrought in thick 
plates. The fmall quantity of European cloths required at Tur- 
fhifh, is brought from Mazanderan, by the way of Shahroot, or 
from Ghilan, by the way of the great road of Yezd. About 
one hundred Hindoo families from Moultan and Jeflilmere, are 
cftablifhcd in this town, which is the extreme limit of their 
emigration on this fide of Perfia ; they occupy a quarter in which 
no Mahometan is permitted to refide, and where they conducted 
bufinefs without moleftation or : and I was not a little 
furprized to fee thofe of the Bramin feet, diltinguifhed by the 
appellation of Peerzadah, a title which the Mahometans ufually 
beftow on the defcendants of their prophet. Small companies 
of Hindoos are alfo fettled at Mufchid, Yezd, Kachan, Cafbin, 
and fome parts of the Cafptan fhorc; and more ex ten five fo- 

cictics in the different towns of the Perfian Gulf, where they 


maintain a navigable commerce with the weftern coaft of India. 

The departure of our kafilah now drawing near, the hadji pur- 
chafed a horfe for my conveyance, with the money which I had 
advanced j but not thinking my weight and baggage a fuificient 


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burthen for the an oal, by no means a robuft one, Ve added two 
heavy parcels of Hying fluffs, on which I w;ib to be Hated. This 
was the moft rapacious Mahometan I had yet known ; not faris- 
ficd with the rirft extortion, he urged me without intermiflion, for 
a loan of money, even the moft trifling fum ; in other words, he 
wanted to cheat me. There are, I believe, few fuch men amon*rt 
us as Hadji Mahomet. He had the reputation of being an opulent 
merchant, and he was connected with perfons of the firft rank in 
bis country j his deportment was grave and dignified ; his manners 
in common intercourfe were fo forcibly infinuating, that he never 
failed to pleafc, even thofe who knew and had experienced bis ill 
qualities j he had, on the ofterrfible fcore of devotion, made pil- 
grimages in A abia, Turkey, and Perfiaj he prayed with unde- 
viating regularity five times in the day, befides a long 10II of fu- 
pererogatory or'tkn?. Yet this man of property and rank, of po- 
lite manners, and profefled fanclity, having in vain aimed at a 
larger fum, importuned me in abject language to lend or give him 
half a crown. But my feelings having become callous, from a 
long affociation, I fuppofe, with thofe who had nunc, I w is enabled 
to withfland, with intrepid coolnefs, the intreatics of the hadji, 
who feemed to tike the refufal nothing amifs ; indeed I ima- 
gine, he accounted me a pei ibn of difcretion, attd converfant in, 
the bulinefs of the world. 

Th at I might the better guard againft a fufpicion of the cha- 
ncier I reprefented, efpecially in the mind of the hadji, who to 



his other acquirements united iufatiable ir.quLitlvmefs, I tol'h&m 
that 1 was a Sooni, imagining that the low eftimation in which 
this feet is held in Perfia, would prevent further notice. The 
hr.dji did not approve of this character, which was rarely fcen, 
and much abhorred in this part of the country j nor would it be 
fafe for a Sooni, he faid, to travel in the focitty of Sthiah pilgrims, 
who elevated by their late purification at Mufchid, would aflume a 
merit from infulting and ill treating me. 

Bv the council of Hadji Mahomed I became a Schiah, and 
was received among the pilgrims without a fcrupie. It was, be- 
lieve me, with no little concern, that I parted from the roollah, 
who had been to me an ufeful as well as a pleafant companion ; 
and in the unreferved intercourfe which had for fome davs fub- 
filled between us, 1 experienced a pleafure, the more fcnfible, as 
my fituation before had been folitary and irkfome. In his deal- 
ings, I found him punctually hontft, for conceiving an attach- 
ment to this harmlefs conjuror, I ufed to make enquiries at the 
places where he made his purchafes for me, but never difcovercd 
a falfe charge. 

On the morning of the 28th of December, left Turfliifti, and 
about noon arrived at the village of Killeelabad, two and a half 
furfungs. Our party confifting of about fix or feven perfons, the 
Tubrez having not yet joined, halted at a fmall karavanfera, where 
being plentifully luppiied with fuel by one of the villagers, to 


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whom our hadji was known, we pafled a cold fnowy night very 

On the 29th, at Hadjiabad, a fmall fort, three furfungs. 
When the chief of this place was informed that Hadji Mahomed 
was our leader, for though of a diftant province, he was well 
known in Khoralan, we were invited to the fort, and hofpitably 

This day my horfe gave many tokens of inability to fupport 
the heavy burthen that had been laid upon him. He eat little, 
fweated much, and often (tumbled. In one of his inclinations, I 
was thrown from my elevated feat with a violent fliock, and re- 
ceived a violent contufion on the hand. Inftead of exprefling any 
concern at the difafter, the hadji (harply reprehended my want 
of ikill, and predicted ill fuccefs to my undertakings. 

At Hadjiabad the pomegranates are of a delicious flavor, a 
property indeed of this fruit in mod parts of Perfia. It has a thin 
foft (kin, and contains a large quantity of juice, than which no- 
thing in hot weather, or after fatigue can be more grateful. 
There is a fpecies of the pomegranate, in Perfia and alfo in Af- 
ghaniftan, whofe granules are without feed, called the Redana;* 
it is of a fuperior kind, and generally fcarce. 

On the 30th, at Nowblehuckum, three furfungs, a large and 
populous village, where our party was joined by the Tabrez pil- 

• This word in the Pcrfic, fignifics without feed. 
Vol. II. Y giitns. 


grims. From Turihifh to this place, the general direction of the 
road, lay about weft ; the country is open and well cultivated, but 
like the eaftern divifion of Khorafan, fcantily fupplied with wood 
and running water. At this place, my endeavour to procure a (lock 
of wheat bread, to fupport me during a three or four days journey 
over a defert, which lay in the road, was wholly fruitlefs. The 
number of applicants for a like provifion was fo gieat, and their 
arguments from the late meritorious fcrvice they had performed, 
was fo much more efficacious than mine, that I was obliged to reft 
fhti&fied with a few barley cakes. 

Being thrown by a fort of chance, for the two laft days, into 
the company of a Ghilan feid, who had been making the pilgri- 
mage of Mufchid, we agreed after a fhort preliminary, to place in 
a common ftock our provifions and good offices. Man you know 
of all created beings, is the leaft fitted, and the leaft defu ous to live 
alone. It is true, that if not funk by vice, or fafcinared by difllpa- 
tion, he will occafionally fly from the fatigues of bufinefs, the rapid 
hurry of crowds, and feeking the fhade of retirement, folace and 
exercife his intellectual faculties. But when he has breathed out 
his day of contemplation, he is often feen returning from the 
world he fled from, with a fond folicitude. It is not for me to 
expatiate on the pleafures and ufes of fociety, the fubje£t has for 
ages fallen under the moft extenfive and erudite dileuflion ; nor 
can the pen of a journalift give it additional luftre. I will now 
only oblerve, that after a tedious fatiguing journey, it was with a 



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high relifh, I fat down to a homely meal with this feid, whofe re- 
marks and lingular opinions on the fubje£t of religion, never failed 
to give amulement and information. 

On the 31ft, at Durroona, feven furfungs, a fmall village, fi- 
tuate near the weftern bounJary of the territoiy of Abedullah, the 
road led in a weftern direction through a barren country. In 
eroding a fteep rivulet, during this day's journey, my horie precipi- 
tated me with the hadji's ba^s of dye into the middle of it, where we 
were difcovered lying by this now enraged Mahometan. He fmote 
his beard until his anger found utterance, when he poured on me a 
torrent of abufe, and charging his ill fortune to my fcandalous omif- 
fion of the ftated prayers of a MuflTulman, he declared that I fhould 
indemnify the lofs of his paint to the laft farthing. 

On the ift January, 1784, having travelled eight furfung?, 
through a defert, which was interfperfed with low hills and a 
thin fcattering wood, we halted on an eminence, where the fnow 
which covered it, fupplied our water. My horfe became fo much 
enfeebled, that he was unable to carry me with the other part 
of his load j and I (hould have been left on the ground, had 
not fome of the paflbngers who were apprized of the extraor- 
dinary fum which I had paid for hire, warmly expostulated with 
the hadji on the injuftice of his conduct j fomewhat abafhed at 
the remonitrance, and fearful perhaps of a more general attack 
on the many weak fides of his character, the hadji procured a 
horfe, from a ped'on who was proceeding two ftages on our road, 

Y 2 and 

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and who for a fmall gain, confented to difmount and incur as 
exceflive fatigue. 

The domeitic aflbciate of Hadji Mahomed, having feen h» 
patron treat me with neglect, and often with rudenefs, thought 
that he might with impunity indulge a like fpirit j but feeing 
no reafon to fhew him the refpeel which I obferved to the hadji, 
I was provoked this evening to give him a (mart chafthement, 
and in the Englifh manner j a fpecies of attack as novel to him 
as it was efficacious, and which furprized the pilgrims, who be- 
ftowed on me a general applaufe. In this occurrence, you will 
perceive the eflential advantages of my Mahometan character : for 
in my real one no affront, however infolent, or opprobrious could 
have warranted any active refentment } the only refource would 
have been a filent patience ; it is indeed often neceflary to affuage 
the offender's wrath, to avert a further outrage. The penalty that 
would probably be inflicted on a Chriftian, hardy enough to lift his 
hand in this part of Perfia, againft a Mahometan, would be a heavy 
fine or fevere corporal puni foment. 

The Armenians who vifit moft of the quarters of weftern Afia, 
are feldom feen on this road, dreading equally the inimical dilpo- 
fition and inveterate prejudices of the inhabitants to all thole of 
a different faith, and the incurfions of the Turkoman Tartars. 

On the 2d, at Towrone, five furfungs, a fmall fortified village, 
fituate in the districts of Hmael Khan, an independant chief, who 
alfo claims the defert, extending from Deronne to this place nor is 


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it probable that the property will ever be difputed. Many travellers, 
it is laid, have perifhed in this track, from the intenfe heats and a 
fcarcity of water, which in the courfe of the firft ftage, is procured 
but in one fpot, by digging fmall wells. 

We learned that a party of fifty Turcoman horfe, had yefter- 
day palTed under the walls of Towrone, in the way to their own 
country. Thefe fierce free-booters who wage a common war on 
the Perfians, enflave as well as plunder thofe who fall into their 
hands% To prevent an efcape, the captives are fent into the inte- 
rior parts of the country, where they arc employed in tending the 
numerous droves of cattle and horfes, with which Tartary abounds. 
They are alfo occafionally fold to the Kalmucks, the moft rude and 
lavage of all the Tartar race.* A flavery with thefe is fpoken of with 


• One of the names of a native of Tartary, in the language of his country, is Tat- 
ter and Tattaur. Having often indulged a cunofity in iearcinng for the etimo'.ogy of 
Afiatie names, which though not tending to the development of any important facts, 
may refii.3 fubordinate lights, 1 have been induced to infert fume of them in this place. 

The term, Kerung or . eringhee, a name commonly applied at this day amen ■ moft 
of the nations of »Aa, except the Chinese, feems to be derived from Frank, an ap- 
pellation by which the Crufade Chriftians were indifcriminatcly defcribed by the inha- 
bitants of Afia Minor. 

Saracen one of the names formerly given to the rxoplc of Arabia, may on a ground 
fair enou^o be deduced from Sahara, which in the Arabic, fig.iific s a defert, and may 
with equal propriety be given to the inhabitant of a barren region, as the term High- 
lander, amon^ u&, to th rd dent of a mountainous country ; and t am the more induced 
to adopt the probable truth of this derivation, as it was pointed out to me by the moft 
accurate fchokr v the prelent ArcnbiUiop of VoikJ of our Country. 



horror, and accounted worfe than death. The Turcomans of thh 
day, are a tribe of no important note ; and their military opera- 
tions are directed chiefly to the attack of karavans and dcfencelcfs 
villages. They are no longer that great and powerful people 
which produced a Zinjis and a Timur ; the conquerors of Afia, 
whofe pofterity were feen in this country, feated on the molt 
fplendid throne of the world. It is now received as a general por- 
tion of hiftory, that thofe immenfe bodies of foldicrs which fprcad 
over and ultimately fubdued the dominion of Rome, under the 
name of Goths and Vandals, were the Tartars of Bochara, Kheiva 
and the fliores of the Cafpian. The prefent chief of the Turcoman 
tribe, refides at Bochara, where he keeps a moderate court, and ex- 
crcifes a very limited power. The Tartars of the more eaftern re- 
gions, the modern conquerors of China, who may be ranged under 
the common defignation of Kalmucks and Monguls, are divided 
into various roving herds, and would feem to be no longer a caufe of 
dread to the fouthern nations of Afia. 

Preparing this morning to proceed, I could neither find the 
horfe I had ridden yefterday, nor its matter, who it appeared had 
proceeded alone an hour before the departure of the party. The 


The Mahometan fubjc&s of the Ottoman empire, are known in Europe by the 
common name of Turks, wnich immediately accords with one if the grand dcfigna- 
tions u > J by the Tartars, who wreftcd that region from the Arabian khaliphat. And 
a caufe of a fimilar nature has probably induced many of the Hindoo traders, to apply 
the fame denomination to the Mahometans of India. 


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road being covered with a deep fnow, it was with great fatigue 
and exertions I could overtake the delerter, who frankly faid, that 
he was apprehenfive of not being paid by the hadji, but, that if I 
would anfwer for the payment of the hire, I might immediately 
mount his fteed. The adjustment being fpeedily made, I rode on, 
to Towrone ; from whence I fent back this fame perfon, on whom 
money had irrcfiftible force, to bring the hadji's tired horfe, which 
I learned from fome of the paflengers, was fcarccly able to crawL 
Fearful of being altogether abandoned by Hadji Mahomet, I found 
it neceflary to fpeak to him in unreferved language, which was 
ftrongly fupported by a Perfian merchant, whofe notice I had ac- 
quired, and after much oppofition, became fuccefsful. 

On the 3d, the kafilah halted in a defert, eight furfungs, at a 
imall ftream, the only water feen in the courfe of this day's jour- 
ney ; the Ghilan feid and I had filled our bottle for mutual ufe, 
and the bread, cheefe, and onions, which fupplied our evening 
meal, giving me a violent thirlt, I made frequent applications to 
our water flock. The feid, feeing that I had taken more than a 
juft portion, required that the refidue mould be refeived for his 
ceremonial ablutions. 

While the feid retired to pray, I went in fearch of fuel, 
and returning fuft to our quarter, I haftily drank off the re- 
maining water, and again betook myfelf to wood- cutting, that 
I might not be difcovered near the cmp y vefTcl by my aUbciate, 
who had naturally an irafcible temper. When 1 fuppofed he 



had returned from his prayer, I brought in a large load of wood, 
which I threw on the ground with an air of great fatigue, \d 
of having done a meritorious fervice. w Aye," fays he, wh;i2 
" I like a true believer have been performing my duty to God, 
" and you toiling to procure us firing for this cold night, 
" fome hardened kaufir, who I wifti may never drink again in 
"this world, has plundered the pittance of water which was 
<c fet apart for my ablutions." He made ftricl: fearch among 
cur neighbours for the perpetrator of this robbery, as he termed 
it but receiving no fatisfactory information, he deliberately de- 
livered him or them to the charge of every devil in the infernal 
catalogue, and went grumbling to fleep. 

.On the 4th, at Khanahoody, eight furfungs, a fortified and 
populous village, the refidence of Ifmael Khan, who poffefles a 
finall independant territory in this quarter. The road from 
Towrone, led in a weftern direction, through a defert track, In- 
terfperfed with low and bare hills. 

About three miles to the ea ft ward of Khanahoody, a chain 
of mountains, of the medium altitude, extends in a north and 
fouth direction, whofe weftern face is confiderably higher than 
that to the eaftward. This branch of hills, which feem to 
have a long fcope, has effected a grand change in the courfe 
of the running waters. The ft reams on the weftern fide, have 
/a fouth-weft current, and flow, I imagine, into the Cafpian fca, 
or into the head of the gulf of Perfia, while thofe on the 


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eaftern fide, are probably carried to the more fouthern mores 
of the Gulf. 

From the fummit of the Khanahoody hills, is fecn, to the 
weft and north-weft, a wide extended plain, thickly covered 
with villages and arable lands ; nor does a rifing ground in this 
direction interrupt the utmoft fcope of the eye. Here I muft 
note, that this quarter of Perfia has now aflumed its moft un- 
favorable appearance } it being the depth of winter, when little 
vegetation is feen on the ground, and not a leaf on the trees: 
This day died an old man of our party, who had been long 
ailing ; and what was rather fingular, his death happened while 
he was on horfeback. 

On the 5th, at Eearjumund, three furfungs, a populous 
village in the diftri&s of Ifmael Khan. Halted on the 6th, on 
account of the ficknefs of our kafilah director. Two of the 
pilgrims who were carpenters, made a litter for him, which was 
furniflied with poles like a fedan, and curried by two mules, 
one of which was yoked before and the other behind the feat. 

On the 7th, at Nafirabad, nine furfungs, a fmall fortrefs 
in ruins, fituate on an eminence. We pafled at about midway 
through two uninhabited villages near each other, Kow and 
KaufF, noted places of rendezvous of the Turkoman banditti, 
and (landing on one of the grand roads from Perfia into Tar- 
tary. On approaching Nafirabad, I obferved numerous bones of 
a large fize ftrewed on the ground, and which I learned were 
Vol. II. Z the 


the remains of fome of the elephants of Nadir Shah, who had 
ordered them to be font into the fouthern provinces, where the 
warmth of climate is better adapted to the health of thofe ani- 
mals : but many of them died on the journey. 

Persia, fmce its empire has been rent into pieces, has fuf- 
fcred fevere devaftations, and has been grievoufly depopulated. 
The various petty chiefs, who hold themfelves but the rulers of a 
day, are often incited to oppress the inhabitants, and impofe 
heavy taxes on the merchant ; yet thefe exactions might receive 
fome alleviation, did the governors exert any active efforts in de- 
fending their diftricts from the depredations of the Tartars, who, 
even in parties of a hundred, are fcouring the country from Muk 
chid to the Cafpian fea $ and in the courfe of this laft year, a body 
of them, lefs than a thou&nd, had penetrated to the environs of 
Ifpahan. Such acts of unreftrained violence, marked with every 
fpecies of barbarity, will point out fome of the evils, which have 
this day overwhelmed Perfia, which muft remain funk in this in- 
glorious obfeurity, until fome future hero (hall deftroy the prefent 
pigmy race, and raifing the ftructure of a new empire, mail col- 
lect its ftrcngth, and impart to it vigorous action. 

All the towns, villages, and even the final left hamlets in 
the northern divilion of Perfia, though but at the diftance of 
half a mile from each other, are furrounded with walls, which 
feem to have been erected more as a flielter againft domeftic 
robbery and private feuds, than the alfault of an enemy. In 


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confidering the perpetual alarms, folicitude and machinations, 
which muft neceuarily agitate the inhabitants of this region, we 
are at a lofs, whether to confider them more as objecls of re- 
proach for the depravity of their manners, or of pity, at view- 
ing the ftate of national debafement, to which they have been 
precipitated by the declenfion of their empire. 

On the 8th, at Shahroot, alfo called Buftan, four furfungs, 
a fmall but populous town. From Nowblehuckum, the road 
lay abou tweft to Towrone, whence it had, I apprehend, a weft 
by north direction to Shahroot.* The horfe which I had hired 
from the hadji to carry me to Mazanderan, having died this 
day, I was detained on the road* to take care of my little 
chattels, which muft have been loft, had not fome of my ka- 
filah acquaintances each conveyed a portion, though their horfes 
were much jaded. 

Passing over a fertile well watered plain, which furrounds, 
to a wide fpace, the town of Shahroot, I came late in the evening 
to the karavanfera, where I found the Ghilan feid in pofleflion of 
an apartment, which he had taken for our joint ufe. The cold 
was here extremely intenfe, and had reached the point, which the 
Perfians with a peculiar force of expreffion, term the Zcrb Zim- 
nriftan, the ftroke of winter. The fnow fell thickly about us, 

* The Tabrez pilgrims left Shahroot, about five miles to the right or weftward, 
and proceeded towards their own country by the way of Simna and Caibin. 

. ... . t ■ 

Z 2 and 


and the piercing north wind made every creature (hrink from its 
blafl ; nor were there many cordials at hand to qualify thefc 

Firing is fcarcer here than in any part of Khorafan, it is of 
a bad quality for fuel, and much of it is of a green wood. Our 
lodging had no aperture but the door, which the feid, to fcreen 
hirnfelf from the cold kept fliut ; nor could my mod earneft in- 
treaty obtain any opening for the difcharge of the fmoke. The 
only material differences indeed exifting between us, arofe from 
this, and another defpotic arrangement of the feid, which ufed to 
caufe fome warm debates. 

It was my bufinefc, being the more active member, to pur- 
chafe and bring in fuel, and before day light, to procure water 
and a light to warm the feid, and enable him to perform the ab- 
lution preparatory to prayer, an omiflion of which he would have 
dreaded as the precurfor of fome dire calamity. The feid confented 
to kindle the fire, an office which I could never perform without 
fuffering acute pain in my eyes from the fmoke. Thus were our 
labours, on principles fair enougb, mutually divided ; but when 
we came to enjoy the fruits of it, this defcendant of his prophet, 
wrapped in a large cloak made of fheep Ikins, would take fb un- 
accommodating a poft at, or rather over our fmall fire, which was 
in a manner embraced by the ex ten led (kirts of his garment, that 
I received no warn th ; and I (hould not have known that a fire 
-was in the room, but for a profufion of fmoke. I never remem- 


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ber to have fuffcred fo much inconveniency from the cold -, nor 
could all my wardrobe, heaped at once on my body, keep me 
from (hivering. My anger would often break out to an extreme 
height at the feii's total feizure of the fire-place, and excited very 
impaflioned language but which he never failed to allay, by fet- 
ting forth, that he was old and infirm, that he had foregone all 
his domeftic comforts, which were many, to vifit in the depth of 
winter a diftant Ihrine, and that in confideration of a deed fo me- 
ritorious, and alfo of his holy defcent, it was my duty to affift 
and indulge his wants. 

My difpofition towards him, and a knowledge of mo ft of the 
facts fet forth, made his arguments unanfwerable j and in return 
for the furrender of the hearth, I was invited to Ohilan, where he 
promifed to give me a wife out of his family, and fuitable provi- 
fion for my maintenance. Such was the ordinary refult of oup 
bickerings, and it always tended to make the connection more 
cordial. In my little difputes on the road, the feid gave me vigo- 
rous fupport, and when any particular enquiry was made about 
my perfbn, which it fometimes produced, he would immediately 
aflert that I belonged to him. I have been received as his fon, by 
thole who only knew us en paflant j nor did our appearance dis- 
credit the belief, for we were naturally of a fair complexion, of 
the fame ftature, with greyifh eyes. 

At Shahroot we were frequently vifited by a Mazanderan 



flioemaker,* the raoft efferverfcent zealot, that ever counted bil 
beads or entered a mofque. Having thrown afide his tools and 
committed the fliop to the management of his wife, he had laid 
out the grcateft portion of his property on a horfe, and a large 
koran, and made the grand tour of all the celebrated pilgri- 
mages in Perfia. But he grievoufly lamented that the narrow 
flate of his fortunes, would not permit a visitation at the holy 
tomb of his prophet, which only could make his death eafy, 
and his aflurancc of Heaven well founded. Exclufive of the or- 
dained prayers, he practifed many of a fubfidiary quality, which 
might be termed the half notes of fupplication, and thefe were 
inceflantly whined out with a deep nafal tone, and fometimes 
when his fpirit was violently agitated, he would difchargc them 
with a bellow, as if he meant to batter down the gates of Fa- 
radife by itorm. 

This flioemaker was a little man, extremely irafcibk, and 
though immerfed in devotion, he did not (hew the fmalleft re- 
miflion in the management of his temporal concerns. In an 
altercation with the feid, about the adjustment of a very fmall 
account, not more than three halfpence, a furious conteft arofe 
which terminated wholly in favor of the flioemaker, his language 
which run with an obftreperous fluency, {tunned and greatly ter- 

• The Persian flioemaker is not as in India of the lowed ranks of the people, but 
elafles among the moft reputable tradefmcn of his country. 


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rifled my companion, who hearing himfelf in a breath called 
ChrilHan, Jew, and Infidel, fled from the combat with precipi- 
tancy. This faid flioemaker, by an ill-timed intrufion, had dif- 
covercd me taking fome money out of my purfe j and imme- 
diately retiring, declared to all the people of the karavanfera, that 
the kachmiry, my travelling name at that time, was poflefled of 
a large treafure in gold and diamonds, which he himfelf had feen. 

Such a difcovery in a country governed even by the moft 
falutary laws, might have endangered my property and perfon, 
bat in this quarter of the world, where a man's throat is often 
cut for the fee fimple of his cloak, it placed me in eminent peril. 
But the chain of favorable events, little ftrengthened by my own 
merits, which had propitioufly conducted me from the banks of 
the Ganges, through many an inholpitable track, ftill continued 
to lead me on fafely. 

Having no important matter to lay before you, I muft ex- 
tend my egotifms, and inform you that Hadji Mahomet, having 
now arrived in the territory of the Mazandcran chief, by whom 
he was favored, threw off all rcfcrve ; he plainly told me, that 
inftead of looking to him for a future conveyance, I mould think 
myfelf fortunate in not being charged with the price of his horfe, 
and the damage done to his wares. Seeing him equally empowered 
as difpofed to do me an injury, I cheerfully cancelled my en- 
gagements with him, on the provifo of obtaining his prote£Hon 
during the journey to Mazandcran. 



Shahroot, with its indepcndant diftri&s including Nafir- 
abad, pertains properly, I believe, to the Khorafan divifion, though 
it now holds of Afterabad,* which with Mazandcran and Hsza ir- 
Tirreeb is governed by Aga Mahomed Khan, one of the moit 
important chiefs, now remaining in Perfia. The town of Shahroot 
is fraall and furrounded in fome parts with a flight earthen wall. 
The houfes from a want of wood are built of unburnt bricks, 
and covered with a flat arch of the fame materials. 

Many people are feen in this vicinity, whofc nofes, fingers, 
1 and toes, have been deftroyed by the froft, which is faid to be 
fevercr at Shahroot, than any part of Perfia. The principal traf- 
fick of this diftricl: arifes from the export of cotton, unwrought 
and in thread, to Mazanderan ; and the returns from thence are • 
made in Ruffian bar-iron and fteel, a little broad-cloth, chiefly 
of Dutch manufacture, copper and cutlery. Sugar, from its high 
price, being rarely ufed by the lower clafs of Perfians, they have 
adapted to its purpofes a fyrup called Sheerah, made of the 
infpififated juice of grapes ; but it feemed to be of an irritating 
and inflammable quality} and moft of them mix with their 
food the exprefled juice of the four pomegranate, which makes 
a high flavored and falubrious acid. 

On the the 17th of January, I joined a cotton kafilah, and 

* Shahroot lyes about one hundred miles to the eaftward of the town of Afterabad. 

. , proceeded 

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proceeded to Dhey * Mollah, a fmall walled village, four furfungs. 
The horie which I had hired at Shahroot was ftrong and well 
paced, and promifed to be a very valuable acquifition, as a great 
part of the Mazanderan road, lies over a mountainous country, 
covered with forefts and interfered by rapid dreams. 

At Dhey Moliah, the feid and I were entertained with cor- 
dial hofpitality ; a benefit wholly afcribed to the inherent and 
contingent virtues of my companion, who from defcent, as well 
as his late arduous pilgrimage, had a twofold claim on the be- 
nevolence of his countrymen. I mould be deficient indeed, in 
ordinary gratitude, did I not feel the kind offices of this feid, 
who fmoothed the many inconveniencies which often crofled my 
way, and procured for me accommodations not attainable by com- 
mon travellers. The fruits of this village, fome of which were 
yet frefti, are in great eftimation, particularly the pomegranet, 
which is not inferior to that of Hadjiabad. This quarter of Per- 
fia produces a variety of vegetables, as cabbages, carrots, peas, 
and turnips ; the latter of an excellent kind, and compofes in 
the feafon a principal portion of the food of the inhabitants. 

On the 18th, at Tauck, a fmall fort, five and a half furfungs. 
This day an intenfe froft, which had congealed all the Handing 
water, kept me (hivering with cold during the firft part of the 
journey. About eight miles to the fouth-eaft of Tauck, ftands 

• Dhey in the Ptrfic, fignifies a village. 

Vol. II. A a on a 

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on a fp.icious plain, the town of Dumgam, whofe lofty mina- 
rets are fc^n at a great diilance. This plain has become famous, 
in the latter annals of Per Ha, for a victory obtained by Nadir 
Shah, before the period of his tbvercignty, over the Afghan Alhrulr, 
who then held pofliflion of Ifpahan. The battle which was fe- 
me but decifive, twelve of thirty thoufand Afghans being it is 
laid, either killed or taken, advanced Nadir high in the crema- 
tion of Shah Thamas, who was prefent in the aclion. As a dif- 
tinguilhed mark of his favor, and X>nc of the inoft honourable, 
which the Perfian princes ufed to confer on a fubjeft, he per- 
mitted Nadir to be denominated the royal flave, by the title of 
Thamas Kuli * 

It would afford me a fenfible pleafure, were I enabled to 
point out to you, any monuments of the former grandeur and 
magnificence of the Perfian empire, which has been fecn to run a 
long courfe of glory, and to often combat with fuccels the legions 
of Rome ; yet where arc now the Roman eagles, that were wont to 
itun the world with the cry of viclory ? Where are now the Heeled 
bands of Perfia, who infulted the corfe of a Roman general and 
exhibited a captive Caefar, as a gazing Mock to barbarous nations ? 
They have been fmote by the dertrucYive hand of time, which 
points with derifion at their puny race, and at the inltability of 

•-This event which H mentioned in Fraxer's account of Nadir Shah, happened in 
the year 1729. 


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human power. It is in the fouth of Perfia, wherc^ the relics of 
its ancient grandeur are to be fought, but even there, the mif- 
fhapcn ruins of Babylon and Perfepolis faintly mark the prif- 
tine grandeur and coftly tafte of its princes. 

The upper provinces, though affording the grand fupply of 
brave and hardy foldiers, were rarely vifited by the luxurious mo- 
narchs of Perfia, who dreading the bleak air and barren afpect 
of the north, eftablilhed their refidence in milder climates, whi- 
ther they carried the improvements of knowledge and the refine- 
ments of art. Among the inititutions beft fitted to give perma- 
nency to the Perfian empire, were it inverted with individual fo- 
vereignty, policy would urge the removal of its capital to Kho- 
rafan, famous for the falubrity of its air, and the military abi- 
lity of its inhabitants. Its fituation is alfo well adapted for 
checking the incurfions of the Tartar and Afghan nations, and 
it poflefles a city,* held by the Perfians, in enthufiaftic reve- 

Ispahan and Shiraz, feared in the centre of a country en- 
joying a foft ferenity of air, and replete with the various incite- 
ments to luxury, muft foon enervate their inhabitants and pro- 
mote the influence of corruption. The Perfians fay that, Karcem 
Khan, one of the late chiefs of the fouthcrn provinces, was often 
*irged by his officers to carry his arms into Khorafan, a conqueft 

• Mufchld. 

A a 2 which 

1 88 


which would neceflarily have given him : f upreme dominion 
of Perfia; but though brave and enterprizin^. he had loo long 
indulged in the pleafures of Shiraz, and ufcd to palliate his ie- 
ludlance to the propofed expedition, by obki\ing that after the 
long and dangerous liege of a fmall fort, nothing would be found 
in it, but a few bags of chopped ttraw for his horfc. Yet he 
umft have been aware that Khorafan would have reinforced his 
army with thofe foldiers, who empowered Nadu to expel the Turks 
and Afghans from Perfia, and overthrow the empire of India. 
The northern regions were long the nurfery of a hardy and preda- 
tory militia, who from their bleak plains and mountains, were 
wont to pour their force upon the nations of the fouth, but who 
in their turn felt the force of fiercer and more barbarous tribes, 
until continued emigrations wafted the ftock, and witheld the 
power of foreign conqucft. 

On the 19th, at Killautau, five and a half furfungs, an open 
village (ituate on the declivity of a hill. This day's journey led 
over a gradual afcent, interfperfed with low wood, and fcattered 
fpaces of arable land. This being the laft ftation on the road, 
where bread is to be procured on the eaft fide of the Mazanderan 
limits, I procured a ncceflary fupply. 

On the 20th, at Killaufir, five and a half furfungs, a range of 
mined buildings on an eminence, a mile's diftance to the northward 
of the fmall village of Hirroos. The proprietor of my horfe, a car- 
rier, went out of the road from this place to vifit his family refi- 


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dence, and wifhed much to carry me with him $ the deviation from 
our track being but fliort, I had confcnted to the propofal, and was 
about turning into the path which led to his village, when 
Hac'ji Mahomet arrived and prevented me. 

As this was among the very few marks of goodncfs which 
I experienced from the hadji, to notice it, is but fimple juftice 
to his character, of which perhaps, you are already impreffed 
with an ill opinion. Taking me afide, he enjoined me, in a 
manner which evinced an honeft concern, not on any pretence 
to proceed to the carrier's village; that the ftory of the ftioe- 
maker had circulated a general belief of my great wealth, and 
that the carriers had been heard in concerting fchemes to rob, 
and even deftroy mej that if fuch was their defign, there were 
few actions, he obferved, however atrocious, which thefe men 
would not perpetrate, when plunder was the object ; and that 
the fituation of the village, which was detached and inhabited 
only by their families, would equally facilitate the purpofe, as 
preclude a difcovery. 

This reprefentation determined me agiinft leaving the party; 
but having before confented to accompany the carrier, to whom 
the caufe of the refufal could not be affigned, I impofed the 
talk upon the hadji, who immediately making it his own bufi- 
nefs, told the carrier, in a ftern tone, that as I was under his 
charge, he would not permit me to be feparated from him. 
Though the carrier continued to urge his purpule by a long and 



ftrcnuous argument, he was overruled by the hadji, who by fome 
degree of compulfion, configncd my horfe to the charge of another 
perfon. As we rode on, the hadji congratulated my near efcap» 
from a combination, which muft have been fatal to my perfon, or 
deprived me of my property ; for that many robberies were com- 
mitted in thefe parts, and ufually accompanied by murder. 

This night I lodged in the remains of a bath, which feemed to 
have pertained to fome place of greater note, than the appearance 
of the adjacent ruins indicated. The Ghilan feid had not joined 
me in the latter part of the journey, according to a ufage obferved 
by us, for adjufting the concerns of our evening meal, but more 
prudently went to Hirroos, where he was well received. Being 
now habituated to the fcid's company, which had become equally 
amufmg and convenient, for even our little difputcs had a rifible 
tendency, I fenfibly felt its lofs. Though our acquaintance was 
of fuch (hort duration, I already began to cftccm this man as a 
trufty friend fo natural and immediate is the propenfity to cleave 
to what gives us folace and relieves our anxiety ; nor is any object 
more completely veftcd with this property, than a pleafant com- 

Cordial connections and the interchange of good offices, no 
where make a quicker progrefs than in the courfe of a journey. 
Travellers, aware of the approach of a period, which is to caufc a 
general, probably a final feparation, occupy to the beft advantage, 
the limited extent of their aflbciations ; and as few fdfifli views 


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have time to fpring up, thefe contingent compacts ufually abound 
in good humour and good faith. In India, they have in common 
circulation, as a fentence cxpreffivc of the pleafures ariiing from 
CUrfory fbcictics and parties^ cafualiy formed, " Enjoy this miet- 
" ing as a gift (hatched from fate } for the hour of departure 
M Hand* on your head.'* Being now about to enter a province, 
different in its afpeft and production from that of Khoralan, I 
will here draw the line of divifion, which may be done with the 
more propriety at Killaufir, as it will alfo mark the caftern limit 
of Uazaar Jireeb,* a fmall diftricl dependant on Mazanderan. 

From Shahroot, the road has nearly a weftern direction, 
through a country generally open- Low hills are alfo feen at 
wide intervals. The foil is a mixture of fand and earth, and Well 
cultivated as far as the vicinity of Killantau, where the vallies be- 
come more contracted, and leave bur fmall fpaces for agriculture. 
The fides of the hills are chiefly appropriated to the paftures of 
fhtep, which are numerous and of an excellent kind. 

On the 21ft, at Challoo, four furlungs, a final) open village, 
on the eaftern fide of the bafe of a fleep hill, and cloftr on the 
brink of a rapid ftream, which was dallied with a bold and beau- 
tiful effect on the rocks that lay thickly fcattered in its bed. We 
had now entered a country overfpread with mountains and forelts, 
in which were many oak trees, but then- dwarfith appearance 

• Hazur in the Perfic, fignifies » thoufimd, and Jirctb, a tneaXuxemcnt of Land. 



fhewed that they wanted a kinder foil and climate. At Challoo, 
the feid largely reaped the fruits of his pilgrimage and his facred 
defcent. He and confequently his aflbciate, for he never failed to 
divide with me the good things which fell to his lot, were lodged 
in a mofque, and hofpitahly treated by the inhabitants, who fup- 
plied us in the firft inftance with great ftore of fuel, which ena- 
bled us to hold out againft a heavy ftorm of fnow, and a piercing 
north wind ; and without which, indeed, our fpacious and airy 
apartment muft have been untenable. 

It was with pleafure I again faw an open village ; it exhibited 
a ruftic fimplicity and a peaceful confidence, which I think could 
not have exifted within a rampart. The inhabitants alfo, if 
their kindnefs to us has not biafled me too much in their favor, 
feemed to be more civilized and humane, than the people of 
Khorafan. The houfes here are built with flat roofs, fupported 
with large beams, which the adjacent forefts plentifully fupply. 
A continuance of the ftorm, detained us on the 226, at Chal- 
loo, where we found no abatement of the hofpitality of the in- 
habitants, who furnilhed every thing that could render our fitu- 
ation commodious. 

On the 23d, in the morning, our party moved and penetrated 
through a mountainous country, interfered with rivulets, and 
clofely covered with large trees, which being (tripped of their leaves, 
I could not afcertain the different fpecies, nor could the carriers, 
whofe only knowledge feems to confift in driving horfes. Halted, 


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at the diftance of five furfungs from ChaHoo, under fome trees, 
about one hundred yards from the fide of the road, where we kept 
a large fire burning throughout the night ; not for deterring the 
attack of wild beafts, which are not numerous in thefe woods, but 
to qualify the intenfe coldnefs of the air. 

On the 24th, proceeded five furfungs through the foreft. In 
the evening, while I was riding alone, the party, which had pro- 
ceeded a fliort way before me, turned quickly into the wood, and 
came to their ftation-ground. It was in vain that 1 endeavoured 
to trace any marks of men or horfes ■> for the ground to a great 
extent was ftrewed with leaves. My horfe, on having for fome 
time loft fight of the party, became reftlefs, and 1 thought much 
terrified. It neighed inceflantly, and though a willing, active 
animal, would not move in any direction but with reluctance. 
My fituation grew alarming; it was growing dark, and I found 
myfelf bewildered in an immenfe foreft, with fcarcely the hope of 
obtaining relief during that night. 

In fearching for a fpot to faften the horfe, and lay myfelf 
down, good fortune threw in my way two men, who were driving 
a loaded bullock and an afs. Without noticing my embarraflment, 
which they might have made an ill ufe of, or even making any 
enquiries, I learned that a part of the kafilah had proceeded on 
the road which they were purfuing, and going with them about 
two miles, I found Hadji Mahomet, with fome other paflbiger?, 
refreshing themfelves on a fmall plain, lkirted by a ftream of 
Vol. II. Bb , water. 


water. The proprietor of the horfe, who had followed, expreiTed 
much difplcafure at my quitting him, which he afcribed to the 
council of the hadji, whom he fpoke of with a fneer, and laughed 
at the fort of protection which I had chofen. 

On this night was feen by moft of the paffengers, a ftar, with 
a brightly illuminated tail, which I apprehend, from its form and 
quick motion, muft have been a comet. Hadji Mahomet now 
became profufe in his offers of fervice j he promifed me every ac- 
commodation at Mazandcran, as a fupply of cloths, for I was 
ill apparelled, a proper place of lodging, and to difpatch me 
with fafety to the quarter of my deftination. This man, though 
one of the moft acute and knowing of his feci:, did not feem 
to entertain any idea of my being a Chriftian ; yet he fufpecled 
the truth of my narrative, or rather, he did not believe a word 
of it ; but imagined that I was a trader in jewels, which were 
concealed about my perfon. 

Desirous of knowing the (late of the Ruffian navigation, 
on the Cafpian fea, I had fought the information with too much 
earneftnefs, which created a fufpicion at Shahroot, that I was a 
Ruffian, efcaped from the captivity of the Tartars, and return- 
ing to my own country. But this conjecture ceafed, when it 
was known that I had come from the eaftern fide of Perfia. 

On the 24th, proceeded five furfungs, through the foreft. 
The greateft part of this day's journey, lying over fteep hills of 
a moift clayey foil, became of difficult accefs to our cattle^ 


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The carriers of this road, ufually employ mares for the con- 
veyance of merchandize, being more tractable than flallions, and 
requiring lefs attendance. They arc indeed as quiet as any do- 
meftic animal, and though feeding at large, during the night, 
they never ftrayed from the vicinity of the ftation. 

On returning this evening, from a fmall excurfion into the 
foreft, I found that my Ghilan affociate had left his quarter, 
and gone over to the pcrfon who has been before mentioned, 
as the travelling afliftant of Hadji Mahomet. He was alfo a 
native of Ghilan, well known to the feid, and being flout and 
hale, had previoufly to their departure, agreed to be the feid*s 
alTiftant during the pilgrimage ; it was a concern of moment to 
this old intirm man, in the various accidents to which a long and 
hanarting journey was liable, to have fo capable a companion i 
and the Ghilanee, to corroborate the fmcerity of his offer, had 
formally pledged himfelf on the koran. There was every reafon 
to credit the feid's relation of this compact, for he was an invio- 
lable obfei vcr of the truth, and I have myfelf often witnciTcd the 
ill treatment which he experienced from his countrymen. But 
being now near home, where a retaliation might be feared, he 
.had aftumed fo genuinely the femblance of contrition, that in the 
i 1 tec or my flioit abfence, the feid's full forgivenefs was obtained, 
a: ul the promife of future union. On feeing nic, the feid {eumell 
cm ban ailed, but fa id nothing, and while I was preparing a (lender 
flipper, my attention was roufed by a loud noile of altercation 

B b 2 iron 

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from the Ghilan quarter, where I faw a furious debate waging be- 
tween the members of the new alliance. The old pilgrim foon re- 
turned to me, entreating with many confeffions of his credulous 
folly, to occupy his former ftation. 

On the 25th, completed, in a journey of five furfungs, the 
pafTage of the foreft, and halted on its weftern edge. This day 
we frequently c rolled the Mazanderan river, which, after winding 
in various directions, takes a northweft courfe through the flat 
quarter of the province, and falls into the Cafpian fca at Mufchid 
Sir. This ftream is rapid among the hills, but fordable for laden 
horfes. And on reaching the plains, it flows with an eafy current. 
At a toll-houfe within the Ikirt of the foreft, the merchants paid & 
fmall duty, and I was aflefled a few pence, on the fcore of being 
a ftranger. 

In my way through this extenfive foreft, I did not fee the vef- 
tige of a habitation, nor any culture, except fome very narrow 
ftrips of land, thinly interfperfed at the bafe of the hills. But 
the vallies now opened and exhibited a pleafing picture of plenty 
and rural quiet. The villages all open and neatly built; the 
verdant hills and dales, encircled by ft reams of delicious water, 
piefented a fcene that gave the mind ineffable delight. The air, 
though in winter, was mild, and had the temperature of an Eng- 
lifti climate in the month of April. This change of weather, ef- 
fected within fo fliort a fpace of time, arifes from the low fitua- 
tion of the province, its near vicinity to the Cafpian fca, and the 


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ftieltcr of the adjacent mountains. The fheep in numerous flocks 
were feeding on all fides, but they are of a lefs iize than thofe 
of Khorafan, and have not the large ponderous tail which is pe- 
culiar to this animal, in the countries lying between the Indus 
and the eaftern confines of Mazanderan } neither is their flefla 
fo fat or well tarred. 

On the 26th, at Sari, three furfungs, a fortified town and the 
refidence of Aga Mahomed Khan, the chief of Mazanderan, After- 
abad r and fome diftri&s fituatc in Khorafan. The country in this 
day's journey was flat and woody, intcrfperfed with froall ft reams, 
and bounded to the north-eaft and fouth-weft by a low range of 
hills. The kafilah having halted about two miles to the fouthward 
of Sari, the ieid and I walked into the town, which we found had 
grievoufly fuffered by the effects of a late fire. We were {topped at 
the gate-guard, which was under the charge of an Abyflinian flave,* 
who after making the common enquiries permitted us to pafs. 
The market of Sari is plentifully fupplied with provifions, among 

• A native of thi* quarter of Africa, is denominated Huhfbi, among the Mahome- 
tans and is held in high eftimation in Alia, for a fuppofed charaderiihe fidelity to the 
fervice in which he is employed. Abyflinians are frequently feen about the perfons of 
princes, where they bold fiations of confidence. And at the Porte, as eunuch;, they 
are cntrufted with the whole interior managament of the imperial haram j the females 
of this tribe, though deficient in thofe external charms, which are fo eagerly fought af- 
ter by the Mahometan*, a id which indeed diffufe pleafure am mg all the fons of men, 
are alio greatly prized for many domeftic virtues, and cfpecially for their chaftity. 



which is feen the grey mullet, a fifli abounding in all the riven 
which fail into the fouthern fliore of the Cafpian fea. 

Sari is rather a i'mal! town, but crouded with, inhabitants, 
many of whom are merchants of credit, who refort thither for 
the parpofe of fupplying the chief and his officers with articles of 
foreign produce. A fociety of Armenians is eftablifhed in the 
vicinity of the town, where they exercife a various traffic and 
manufacture a fpirit diftilled from grapes, of which Aga Mahomed 
drinks free ly, though this habit does not fecm to operate to the 
prejudice of the people. This chief has the reputation of being 
attentive to bufinefs, and of poflcfling an cxtenfive capacity, which 
is indeed obvious to common notice, throughout all parts of his 
government. The walls of thz town are kept in good condition 
and the ditch though narrow is deep, and fufficiently tenable 
againft any force now exifting in this country. 

A palace has been lately built at Sari, of commodious neat 
ftru&ure, though of limited fize, and has a more compact appear- 
ance than any building which I have feen in Perfia. The front is 
occupied by a fmall efplanade, on which are mounted three pieces 
of cannon, with carriages of good woikmanfhip fixed on three 
wheels. A?a Mahomed, a Pcrfian, of the Kajar tribe,* is about 


• A word in the provincial language of Mazanderan, fignifying a rebel or a defcr- 
rcr, and the name of rn cxtenfive tribj, chiefly rcfiding in Mazandcran and AAcrahad. 


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fifty years of age, and the fon of Mumtaz Khan,* who in the dif- 
trachons which involved Perfia, fubfequent to the death of Na- 
dir Sli.ih, itood forth among the various competitors for the 
throne, and was for a (hort pciiod, declared head of the empire 
by a large party of the people. But he was ultimately com- 
pelled to yield to the fuperior force of Kareem Khan, by whom 
he was put to death. The family of Mumtaz Khan, falling alfo 
into the hands of the conqueror, he deprived Aga Mahomed, the 
eldeft fon of virility. I am not enabled to give you any fatis- 
faftory information of the events which promoted the enlarge- 
ment of this chief, and in quick gradation inverted him with the 
pofleffion of an extenfive territory. 

In a country where the evolutions and caprice of fortune 
are exhibited in infinite multiplicity, and her wheel whirls with 
a velocity that confounds obfervation, where the flave of the morn- 
ing is often fcen at noon exalted on the ruins of his mafter, it 
becomes a perplexed dilguifing talk, to trace the ftcps which lead 
to honors and power i nor docs it adequately reward the enquiry 
of reafon. Such tranlitions may be fummarily afenbed to the 
general depravity of a people, who unreftrained by laws, or even 

Like the Rajahpoots of India, the Kajars arc 1 fually devoted to the piofeflion of arms, 
and they compofc the Lrgclt portion of the foldicry o: theft provinces. They are men- 
tioned by \ir. Hanway in his relation of his tianfadiuns at Aftcrabad. 
• He was aJfo called Fultah Ali Khan. 



the habits of juftice, give a loofe to every impulfe, which pro- 
mifcs the gratification of ambition, avarice or revenge. 

Aga Mahomed has become, fince tl^e death of Kareem Khan r 
the moft powerful chief of Perfia. He has many brothers, one 
of whom, Jafficr Kooly, governs Balfrofli, the principal town of 
Mazanderan } but his conduct is narrowly watched and his au- 
thority fo limited, that he cannot iflue a paflport to a Ruffian tra- 
ding vefTel without the affent of Aga Mahomed. The forces of 
this chief, on occafions of fervice, may amount to fifteen thou- 
fand cavalry, which were embodied in the courfe of the lair year, 
when he overun Ghilan, and plundered Reftid, the refidence of 
Hydeat Khan, the ruler of the province, who, with his family and 
treafure, fought lefuge in the Ruffian factory of Enzillce* until 
the Mazanderan troops had evacuated the country. 

It appears that Aga Mahomed is preparing another attack, 
which is thought will fpeedily be effected, unlefc he is deterred 
by the power of the Ruffians, who having long derived exten- 
five advantages from the commerce of Ghilan, feem difpofed to 
efpoufc its caufe. Aga Mahomed is at this time, the only Per- 
fian chief bordering on the Cafpian fea, whom the empire of 
Ruffia has yet made tributary, or rendered fubfervient to its 

• Situate near the border of the Cafpian fca, about fix miles to the northward 
of Refod. 


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20 1 

About a year ago a fmall Ruffian fquadron arriving at Afh- 
rofF, a capacious bay on the Afterabad fliore, the commanding 
officer directed a large building to be conftructed near the Ihorc, 
for the purpofe of accommodating his crew, and probably to lay 
the bafis of fome future plan. When the building was nearly fi- 
nilhed, Aga Mahomed to whom this procedure had given alarm, 
invited the commodore, an inexperienced young man, with his 
officers, to an entertainment given at Afterabad, on the celebra- 
tion of fome Mahometan feftival. Many of the Ruffians with 
their officer went to the Perfian feaft, where they were fuddenly 
feized and put into confinement. Aga Mahomed then affected 
to exprefs much refentment at the conduct of the Ruffians, in 
having erected without permiffion, fo large and folid a building 
in his country. It was in vain that the Ruffian expatiated on 
the treachery of the aft, and fo glaring a violation of hofpita- 
lity. He was refolutely anfwered, that unlefs his men were di- 
rected to demolifti the building, the party fhould be detained 
in prifon, and perhaps meet with a worfe fate. 

The commodore dreading the effects of this threat, difpatched 
the neceftary orders to the fquadron ; and when the work was 
performed, he and his companions were releafed. The officer was 
foon after difm'uTcd from the command of the Cafpian fquadron, 
and baniftied from the court. The emprefs feverely cenfured his 
breach of military conduct:, which on account of youth, and a 
regard for his family, (he obferved had not been noticed with the 
Vol. II. C c deferved 


deferved puniftunent. Aga Mahomed lately received an addrefs 
from the Ruffian government, threatening him, it is faid, with a 
fevere vengeance for the infult offered to their flag, unlefs he made 
a fpeedy atonement. But it does not fecm that this chief is dif- 
pofed to fliew any refpeft to the requifition ; and if credit is to 
be given to a general rumour, another defcent on Ghilan may be 
foon expected , the probability of which is corroborated by a pro- 
hibition of all intercourfe with the inhabitants of that province. 

On the 27th, we left Sari, and proceeding five furfungs, 
through a country interfperfed with plain and foreft, halted on 
the flcirt of a wood near the high road. At half the diftance 
of this day's journey, croffed a fordable ftream, which runs to 
the left or north-weft, and falls into the Mazanderan river. The 
carriers were {topped at the paiTage, and ordered to convey on 
their horfes a quantity of (tones, and place them in certain 
fwampy parts of the great road, leading from Sari to Balfrofti ; 
which, it is laid, was firft conftruc"ted by Shah Abbas, and ap- 
pears to have been cut through a foreft. 

At three miles to the fouthward of our laft night's halting place, 
we pa(Ted through the fmall village of Alhabad, which has a 
daily market well Aipplied with bread, cheefe, and fuch provifions 
as are adapted to the refrefliment of travellers, for the ufe of 
whom it fee ms to have been wholly eftabliflied. 

On the 29th of January, our party arrived at Balfrofli, four 
and a half furfungs. The road this day was the worft I ever 


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had travelled on, and required, in the winter feafon, continued 
labour to make it pafiable. Though deep ditches are extended 
on each fide and drains cut acrofs, to carry off the extraordinary 
moifture of the foil, we proceeded with much difficulty and ha- 
zard. The carriers at certain ftations, were required to deliver 
their refpedtive portions of ftones, and the defaulters, among whom 
I was clafled, were detained by the officers of government ; here 
I might have incurred a long delay, had not the Ghilan feid inter- 
pofed his good offices for me as a pilgrim and his friend. It was 
then foon feen in what a favourable light we were beheld. Our 
hands were even killed in token of reverence. The proprietor of 
my horfe having no religious virtues to plead, and his quantity of 
ftones being found very infufficient, he was not permitted to pafs ; 
and while he with many others were endeavouring to qualify the 
demand, the feid and I agreed to proceed to Balfrofh, that we 
might be flickered againft the weather, which this day had fet 
in with drifts of fmall rain and a fevere cold. 

In high anticipation of the pleafures in flore for us at the 
capital, we were overtaken by the carrier, who foaming with rage, 
at this my fecond defertion, as he termed it, accufed me of an at- 
tempt to fteal his mare. Nor was his paffion allayed, until I 
promifed him a large dim of pillaw, to be ready at his arrival 
in Balfrolh. 

At the diftance of two miles on the fouth fide of the town, 
is feen a fmall ifland in the river, where Shah Abbas creeled a 

C c.2 palace, 


palace, whofe roof with the bridge of communication, has lately 
been applied by the governor of Balfrofh to fome domeftic pur- 
pofes. After paying double the ftipulated hire, and the fine in 
pillaw, I difcharged the carrier who, like all thofe of his profef- 
iion within my knowledge, was an arrant knave. But knavery 
conftitutes a grand branch of his profeflion, and does not 
heavily affect the purfe of the traveller, who if he wilhes to 
journey on with comfort, and have his name puffed, fhould 
heartily feed his carrier •, and as the common nature of man re- 
quires indulgence, occafionally wink at his roguery. Not to go- 
vern too much has been a maxim of long ftanding in the po- 
licy of nations, nor is it lefs neceffary to the welfare and quiet 
of domeftic ceconomy. 

At Balfrofh I was informed that three Ruffian veflels were 
lying in the road of Mufchid Sir, and would fail in a few days 
to Baku * It now behoved me to act warily, and to wind up 
with difcretion an adventure which had hitherto been fuccefs* 
ful, and had at this place reached a crifis, which muft either 
produce a happy, or a dangerous iflue. To this period I had 
aliumed, with good fortune, the Mahometan character, without 
which, the journey I think could not have been performed, e£- 
pecially from Turfhifh to the Cafpian fea* I had been admitted, 
without referve, into the fociety of Mahometans, and had lived at 

• A port on the weftern coaft of the Cafpian fau 


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the fame board with the mod zealous and fcrupulous, fome of 
whom, being now on the fpot, would, on a difcovery of my 
perlon, inveterately refent the deceit. It was firft expedient to 
quiet the mind of the feid, who lodging in the fame apartment, 
mult neceflarily become acquainted with my departure. Telling 
him that I was going to make a pilgrimage at a tomb,* much re- 
ibrted to by the Perfians, in the vicinity of Mufchid Sir, and 
leaving a few things which would be ufeful, I bade him adieu 
with an air of .unconcern, yet breathing a filent, fervent wifli, 
that this old man, whom I was never to fee again, might expe- 
rience every good in the difpenfation of providence. 

Musing on the fcenes which of late had been fhiftcd with 
a rapid diverfity, and on the lingular, yet interefting connections 
which I had formed in the courfe of my journey, I travelled 
on to Mufchid Sir; a fcattered village, fituate on the eartern 
bank of the Mazanderan river, about ten miles diftant from 
Balfrofli, and two from the Cafpian fea. On feeing the Ruf- 
fian quarter, I fent back a horfe which I had hired, and prc- 
fented myfelf to a perfon who was pointed out to me as the 
mafter of a Ruffian vefielj but he did not unJerftand any lan- 
guage that I fpoke. To obviate this emban aliment, an inter- 
preter was called in, and being informed that he was a Ruf- 

• The place of interment of a fon of Mouza Kazim, one of the twelve Inuums 
•f the Perfians. 



fian, I related my ftory without referve ; that I was an En^lifli 
gentleman, who from motives of curiofity and pleafure, had 
travelled from Bengal, through the northern parts of India and 
Perfia, and that I now intended to proceed by the way of 
Ruffia to England. 

The linguift exprcfled 4'urprize at the relation, whic] he 
feemed to doubt; but a repetition, accompanied with that con- 
fidence whkh only arifes from truth, noticing alfo that I was 
enabled to reward any good office, gave my relation credit, at 
leaft with the Ruffian. The matter agreed to convey me to Baku, 
whither his vefiel was configned ; and obferved, that the command- 
ing officer of a frigate lying at that port, would give the neceflary 
directions for my future procedure. The matter being thus hap- 
pily arranged, I was invited to partake of a mefs of fith-broth, 
ferved up in a large wooden bowl ; of which the mafter, fix or 
feven failors, and myfelf, made a hearty meal ; to me it was a re- 
gale both from its being really a favory one, and from the manner 
of participation, to which I had been long a ftranger. 

The Ruffian habitations at Mufchid Sir, are rudely conftruc- 
ted, and far from being clean. The fides are about five feet high, 
and compofed of branches of trees, twifted between ftakes, (luck 
at fmall dirtances in the ground ; and the roof is of thatched ftraw. 
The furniture, equally fimple and coarfe, confifts of fome narrow 
wooden beds, a long board, raifed in the centre to eat at, and a 
few ftools, or buckets inverted to fit on. But the practice of 


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living hard, in all its variations, from eating ftale barley bread to 
fleeping on fnow, had formed me into a complete veteran, fo that 
the Ruffian cabin, with its affemblage of rough utenfils, was to 
my fight a garniflied hotel. And the knife, wooden fpoon, and 
platter, luxuries of a fuperior order. 

In the firft days of my refidence at this place, I fenfibly expe- 
rienced a refrelhment of mind and body. 1 had been accuftomcd 
to rife in the morning before day. break, with my hands and feet 
genearlly tenurabed with cold, when after packing my baggage, 
I was obliged to take a part in the bufinefs of the camel-driver or 
the carrier - y nor did the end of the day's journey, often bring with 
it more than the bared accommodation, or afford me much matter 
of intellectual gratification. But thefe inconveniencies were alt 
done away, and my meals as my deep, became falutary and regular. 
Being thus relieved from labour, anxiety, and the inceffant talk 
of fupporting a feigned character, I thought myfelf happy, and 
as happinefs largely arifes from compat ifon and the excurfions of 
fancy, to which I now gave an ample fcope, this was perhaps the 
mo ft pleafur^able period of my life. 

Thb Caipian fea prelented a grand fcene, and its waves dafti- 
ing againft the fliore, produced with a delightful found, the ex- 
ulting retrofpec~r. of dangers pafled ; yet I endeavoured to check 
this rifmg fally of preemption, ill fuited to the nature of man, 
by considering that the accompltfhment of my journey was greatly 
promoted by a train of events* in which toy own exertions had 



but a trivial (hare. Common tradition, and certain ideas which 
are arbitrarily located in the minds of moft men, had figured to 
me a Ruffian, tall, robuft, of a fierce afpecl, of barbarous man- 
ners, and uncouth deportment. In fhort, truth obliges me to fay 
that I had ever affimUated the idea of an urfa .major with a native 
of Ruffia, and it would have been equally difficult to have fepa- 
rated thefe figures in my mind, as meagernefs from a French- 
man, or corpulence from a Hollander. But I mull crave par- 
don of the Ruffian nation at large, for this and other erroneous 
opinions which I had formed of it. , 

In the firft inftance, I faw that the Ruffians were evidently of 
lower lUture, than moft of the northern people of Europe, and 
generally had the thick form of a Tartar, with his broad vifage. 
Thofe who are not in the fervice of government, encourage the 
growth of the beard ; they wear a long outer veft, which is fatt- 
ened round the middle with a girdle ; their fliirt, like that of the 
Mahometans, hangs over the breeches, which are fhort, and they 
ufually wear boots. Their hair falls loofely down the neck, and 
they cover the head, when abroad, with a cap or bonnet, which 
is taken off in the houfe, and in the interchange of courtdy. 
They pofiefs an addrefs and fuavity of manner?, even in ordinary 
life, which would not difgrace men of a much higher clafs, among 
nations deemed the moft polite. The entrance of a Ruffian into a 
room at firft furprized me ; for, inftead of noticing any pcrfon in 
it, he uncovers his head, and with an air of humble reverence, 


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offers up a prayer to the pi&ure of the virgin and an infant 
Jefus, which is exhibited in the mo ft confpicuous part of every 
apartment. Having performed this ceremony he falutes the com- 
pany, and at departure he obferves the like ufage. I am by no 
means empowered to afcertain the virtual opinions which the 
Ruffians entertain of their national religion, or to what extent 
they may operate in a moral tendency j but I can with confi- 
dence fay, that their exterior oblervance of religious duties is ac- 
companied with a reverential attention ; and is void of that fan- 
talUc mummery which has thrown a ridicule ort many parts of 
the Romifti worfhip. 

I had not long been a member of the Ruffian fociety, when 
Hadji Mahomed appeared at Mufchid Sir. On perceiving him, 
I was impieffed with an involuntary dread, and had my creed 
admitted the tenet, I mould have feen in Hadji Mahomed my 


evil genius. Retiring to the houfe I waited with anxiety for the 
iilue of his operations, which I knew would be hoftile to my wel- 
fare j when, after fome little time the matter of the veftel coming 
in, informed me that the hadji had made many enquiries about 
my fituation, and fpoke of me in terms of regard. The Ruf- 
fian exprefled much furprize at hearing me lament this intelli- 
gence, which he faid, ought to give me pleafure, as Hadji Ma- 
homed was a perfon of eminent note at Mazanderan, and might 
aflirt me in procuring a pafsport, without which I now learned 
no perfon could leave the province. A ftorm now began to 
Vol. II. D d threaten 



threaten me from all quarters the perfon who had been my firft in- 
terpreter, was not as he faid, a native of Ruflla, but an Armenian % 
and with a treachery not uncommon to his tribe* had circulated 
among the Perfians of Mufchid Sir, the information be had been 
entrufted with, embelliflied with many fabrications of his own j 
as that I pofiefled much wealth in money and jewels, and that 
I was a fpy. This ftory obtained a general credit with the Ma- 
hometans, efpecially with Hadji Mahomed, who began to con- 
trive plans of deriving an advantage from my troubles. The 
matter of the veflel feeing the popular cry ftrong againft me, be- 
came fearful of giving me (belter j for it is neceflTary to men- 
tion, that the Ruffian traders, chiefty a low clafs of people, are 
expofed in all parts of the government of Aga Mahomed to fe- 
vere oppreflions and infultj but which an advantageous trafHck 
has induced them to overlook. And Aga Mahomed knowing 
the caufe of their forbearance, preferves no decency in his con- 
dud to them. 

The Rufljan now acquainted me, with manifeft fymptoms of 
fear, tliat were he to receive me without a pallport, his veflel 
and cargoe would be confiscated. The principal freighter of 
the bark, Abbas Ali, a native of Baku, had fhewn me from my 
firft arrival at Mufchid Sir, much kindnefs, and feemed delirous 


of relieving my embarraflrnent. He exprefled a forrow at the fc- 
rioub difiiculty in which J was involved, rendered, he faid, the 
more perplexing by the ill dciigns of the mafter of the veflel* 


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who was a perfon of a bad character but be of good comfort, 
continued he, " for I will be your friend, and do not on any 
pretence enrrufl: your property to the Ruffian." This advice 
came in convenient feafon, and tcftificd that Abbas Ali knew this 
man ; for on the following day he addrefled me in a long ha- 
rangue, letting forth that the Perfians had received intelligence 
of my pofleffing a valuable amount in fpecie and jewels, that my 
own knowledge of thefe people would naturally point out the 
infecure (rate of both my perfon and effects, and that an ear- 
ned regard to my welfare, had induced him to requeft that my 
property might be depofited in his charge, tintil the departure of 
the yeffd. But the counfel of Abbas Ali, not a tittle ftrength- 
ened by the prefent propofal, determined me to be the keeper 
of my own cafh. 

Either die relent men t of ft fuppofed want of confidence in 
htm, or the difappointment of fome finifter purpofe, gave the 
Ruffian a fenftble chagrin 5 and from that time he continued 
to treat me with rudenefs and neglect. That I might retire from 
the view of the people at Mufchid Sir, who were now in the 
habit of accumulating unfavourable conjectures of me, I defirdd 
to go, on board the veflel, and remain there until fome method 
might be adopted to leave the country with permiffion $ and the 
mafter having confentcd, though with much reluctance, to rfly 
. embarkation, I departed fecretely and without any impediment. 
From the Ruffian quarter the diftancc is about a mile and a 
1 D d 2 half 


half to the mouth of the river, where the force of the fea 
has raifed a long and (hallow bar, navigable only by boats and 
(mall light vcflels ; but when the wind blows ftrong from the 
north, the paflage is wholly impracticable. 

The bark lay a league from the (hore in fix or feven fa- 
thoms water, and was about the burthen of one hundred tons, 
with two mafts ; the largeft, fixed in the centre, is of one piece 
and rigged with a (landing mainfail, extended at the upper end 
by a long gaff, and at the foot with a (hcet, a topfail ; and an 
occafional topgallant fail ; this laft is furled before it is hoifted 
with flight ropes ; which are broken when the fail is aloft by 
a preflure on the lower ropes ; the fore part of the veflel is 
furnifhed with a flan ting fore fail, a bowfprit and jib} and on 
the poop Hands a fin all mad, which carries a mizenfail. The 
clumfy form and conftru&ion of the barks which navigate 
the Cafpian fea, (hew that little improvement has been made 
on them fince the time of Peter the Great, who firft introduced 
the art of (hip-building into Ruffia. Having ftraight (ides with 
a large and ponderous kitchen on the deck ; thefe vtffcls fail 
flowly, and only with a free wind. As they lye much in open 
roads, the Cafpian being fcantily fupplied with harbours, they 
are furnilhed with (tout anchors and cables, apparently of a laiger 
fize than is neceftary ; though there is often found full occalion 
for fuch aids to withftand the furious gales of wind and high 
breaking waves, which prevail in this (ca. 


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I now learned that the Ruffian whom I have hitherto termed 


the matter, was not a mariner, but an agent * who is appointed 
to manage the commercial bufinefs of the veffel and dilburfe the 
failing charges. The crew confided of a mafter,-f- termed boats- 
man, his mate, fix mariners, and a cook who from their pay 
and fmall trading priviledgc provide their own diet. The RuC« 
Can feamen among whom I was known by the name of Gre- 
goree, from its near refemblance to George, treated me with a 
cordial hofpitality ; nor rauft you imagine that I was demeaned 
by an unreferved aflfociation with thcfe men, whofe habits and 
mode of life admitted of no difcrimination of rank. I fat down 
at their board without fcruple ; indeed with thankfulncfs ; and 
they never omitted to prefent me with the higheft ftool, the belt 
fpoon, and with wheaten- bread, while they themfelves eat that 
of rye. 

Some tea and fugar,^ purchafed from an Armenian, ena- 
bled me to breakfaft alone in the cabin, which I occupied with 
the boatfman, who (hewed a ready attention to all my little 
wants, and became as agreeable a companion, as the want of 
language would admit. Our common fare on board the vefiel, 

s ' . »••»», 

• Called in the Ruffian language, Precaufee, a difpenfer of orders. . 

f Many of the nautical phrafe* and implements in ufc, among the Ruffians 
kave been adopted from uie butch, from whom Peter the Great learned the art of 
Ihip- buildmg 

% Phi.> fugar the produce of the Weft Indies, and manufactured in England, was- 
imported at Pcterfburgh, whence it came into Pcrfu, by the tract of Aflracan 



confiftet! of a large fpecics of Am, in RuflTia called the Beluka,* 
which was cither prepared in a foop or minced wi'.h a large quan- 
tity of fait and pepper, and boiled in a cover of pafte ; this difn t 
often thought an Englilh failor would have called in his defcriptive 
language, a fhark dumplin. Nor was it inferior in folidity, to any 
fabrication of the dumplin kind ; after the fifh came thick pan- 
cakes, fried in a deluge of butter. I had laid in a ftock of mullet, 
a more wholefomc food than the beluka j but feeing that from a 
fear of being chargeable to me, my mcfunatcs refufed to partake 
of it, I laid afide this with every other diftin&ion, and except the 
tea, fared as they did. 

It now appeared that obftinate difficulties were thrown in the 
way by the cuftom-mafter at Mufchid Sir, who filled his office 
with equal vigilance and rapacity. Seeing me from the unfavor- 
able predicament in which I flood, a profitable game, he directed 
that I fhould be immediately fent on more, there to be detained, 
until the chief's plcafurc fhould be known. As this man only 
wanted fomc of my money, and would have been difappointed by 
my formal departure from the country, I made him, through the 
medium of Abbas Ali, the Baku merchant, a fubftantial offer, but 
delayed the payment till the time of failing, that no fecondary de- 
mand might be preferred. 


* It is taken with a hook near the mouths of mod of the rivers, which fall into 
the Cafpian i its length is generally from fix to eight feet, fometimes it is feen of 


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Two days previoufly to our departure, Ali Abbas came on 
board of the vetfel, and reprefented that the cuftom-mafter was 
inexorable to every folicitation, urging that Aga Mahomed was 
at this juncture averfe from permitting any perfon to leave the 
province, and that were he acccflfary to my efcape, his head on the 
difcoyery, would pay the forfeit. Knowing that an interdiction 
bad beea laid on all inland paflengers, and that the difpatch of the 
^.ufllan had beeu, withheld for the fpate of twenty days, to accom- 
plilh fome purpofe of government, I was aware that a certain 
rjfque was incurred by the Perfian, whom I propofed to indemnify 
by a proper compenfation i but I alfo obferved that if he per- 
Med in the rcfufal of all private negociation, I would myfelf 
proceed to Sari, and relate my the chief, and he well 
knew that no benefit would accrue to him from the decifion of 
his mailer. This argument was completely efficient, and when 
reinforced by fome of my Hindoitan gold, permilfion was given 
me to purfue whatever way I hkid, except that of Sari. 

Effore I leave this quarter of Perfia, I will lay before you 
a brief account of its geography, with curfory ob&rvations on 
it* former and prefent commerce, and its relative policy with. 
Ruffia. Mazanderan which occupies the centre of the fou- 
thern fliore of the Cafpian fea, has Afterabad on the eaft, Ghi- 
lan on the weft,, and to the northward it is bounded by the 

eighteen feet and has the head and form of a fh.v k. This filh is not eaten by the Ma* 
homeuns, who hold it unclean, from having no fcales. 



mountainous tra£V of foreft which has been already notice!. 
Though the fort of Sari, fiom its ftrength and centrical fnu?- 
tion has become the refidence of the chief, Balfrofh is eon tittered 
the capital of the province 

This town occupies an irregular oblong fpace, of about a 


mile and a half in circumference, and (landing on a low moift: 
ground, its ftreets are at this feafon of the year choaked with 
mud. The houfes are coarfely built of brick or clay, with a 
» flat roof, and being generally fmall have a mean appearance. 7 
The karavanferas of which there are four, have little of that ncat- 
nefs and conveniency, which is feen in thofe of upper Perfia,' 
and arc of a much lefs fize } but the market-place, which in the 
manner of Afiatic towns, forms the principal ftrect, denotes an 
aftivc traffick. 

The rice of Mazanderan is of an excellent quality, and com- 
pofes the ufual food of the people, who find it difficult in their 
marfliy lands, to cultivate a furficient quantity of wheat for com- 
mon confumption, and that produced is of a coarfe fort. The 
bread ufed by the higher clafles of inhabitants, is made of the 
flour of Shirwan, a confiderable amount of which is annually 
imported at Mufchid Sir. This deficiency is in fome degree, corn- 
pen fated to Mazanderan by the growth of fugar, which though 
of an inferior kind, is adequate to mod of its common uies. 
When the general demand of this article in Perfia is confidered 
and that it is rarely produced on this fide of the Indus, it might 


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be naturally fuppofed that Mazandcran would derive extenGve 
benefits from fuch a pofieffion } efpecially through its navigable 
vicinity to the fouthern territories of Ruflia, where a large quan- 
tity is confumed, at an advanced price ; yet from an ignorance 
in the methods of preparing and refining it, this valuable pro- 
duel yields but a limited utility. 

An inhabitant of Aftracan, I am informed, came into this pro- 
vince for the purpofe of eftablifhing a manufactory of fugar, but 
failing in his project, no future experiment has been made. 


Were the Ruffians (killed in the procefs, they would be enabled, 
-by the importation of raw fugars, to fix in their countiy an im- 
portant and lucrative commerce. Mazanderan alfo produces a 
/mall quantity of filk, which is fabricated by a fociety of Jews; 
but its principal trade is maintained by a frequent intercourfe 
with the port of Baku, which receives white and coloured calr- 
<oes, cotton, and rice, and returns bar iron of Ruflia, faffron 1 , 
ilour, and remnants of broad cloth procured from Aftracan. The 
tx>mmerce of this quarter, which now does not employ more than 
four or five barks, might be largely extended, did a greater haft 
inony exift between Aga Mahomed and the Ruffians ; efpecially 
were the manufacture of fugar increafed. 1 * 

The Perfians have long attempted to navigate the Cafpian 
fea, though with little fuccefs j their veflels are open, ruddy con- 
tracted, and ill managed, feldom leaving the coaft but in the fea- 

• - . ■■■»•• t 

fon of fair weather - t many of them are fitted out at Farabad, an 
Vol. II. Be ordinary 


ordinary town, fituate at the mouth of a river, thirty miles to the 
caftward of Mufchid Sir, and now fupported by a froall trade 
in rice, fait, fifti, and pottery ware. This town in the Euro- 
pean topography of Mazanderan, bears the appearance of note, 
and gives its name to a province j whatever might have been the 
former importance of Farabad, and it is noticed with refpect 


in Perfian hiftory, little tcftimony of it now exifts. 

The province of Afterabad, lying on the the eaft fide of 
the fouthern Cafpian fhore, affords little produce for a foreign 
trade i and it enjoys a refraining temperate air, and is beau- 
tifully interfperfed with hill and dale, and abundantly fupplied 
with ftreams of falubrious water. 


Shah Abbas, the moft powerful prince of the Suffuee race, 
pleafed with the climate of this province, erected a palace near the 
fhore of the bay of Afhroff, * whither he ufed often to retire to avoid 
the heats of Ifpahan.-f* Almoit the only marine export of this 
province confifts of dried mullets, which are cured intire by fmoke, 
and are held in fuch eftimation by the Ruffians, that two car- 
coes of them are annually imported at Aftracan. 

Ghilam the richeft of the provinces bordering on the Cafpian 
fea, extends in a weftern parallel from Mazanderan ; it is bounded 
on the weft by the territories of Talifh and Aftara | and on the 

• This it the only harbour, on the fouthern fide of the Caspian tea. 
t This prince removed the capital of Pcriia from Calbin to Ifpahan. 


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fouth by a range of lofty mountains, which divide it from the 
dependencies of Cafhan and Calbin, 

Hyde A? Khan, the Ghilan chief, has relinquished Redid, 
his former refidence, and for the fecurity of his wealth and fa- 
mily againft the incurfions from Maianderan, has retired to the 
vicinity of Enzillc, where the Ruffians poffefs a fortified fa&ory, 
garrifoned by a company of foldiers, and fupplied with a few 
pieces of cannon.* 

Hyde at Khan is fuppofed to poflefe a revenue of two hun- 
dred thoufand pounds, a great part of which arifea from the pro- 
duce of (ilk ; and from this revenue, he has amaffed, it is faid, a 
confiderable treafure. Here you muft be cautioned againft com- 
puting Perfian money by your ftandard, for in this country, where 
every commodity is procured at a cheap rate, fpecie may fairly 
be reckoned at double the value which it bears in England. 

Hydeat Khan is about ftxty years of age, and according 
to the information of the Ghilan fcid, of whom frequent men* 
tion has been made, is rapacious, tyrannical, and pufillanimous. 
Confcious of his inability to refill die force of Aga Mahomed 
Khan, he has wholly thrown himfelf on the protection of the 

• The mod accurate account of Ghilan, is found in the travels of the late Jonas 
Hanway, a name widely known in the annals of humanity, and deeply graven On the 
the mod diftinguilhed monuments of his country. Some ufeful remarks on Ghilan arc 
alfo to be collected from a book, entitled, voyages and travels through the Ruffian em- 
pire, Perfia, &c. by William Cook, M. D. 

E e 2 court 


court of Peterfburgh, from which it may be faid, that he dt> 
rives the exiftence of his power, and the fafety of his perfon. 
Nor will the Ruffians, while they enjoy fuch important benefits 
from Ghilan, fail to give him fupport. 

The filks of Ghilan are exported to Aftracan, chiefly through 
the medium of Armenian merchants, fubje&s of Rufiia, who 
pofleis the larger (hare of the Cafpian commerce. It was long 
> believed that the filk brought into Europe from Turkey, wag 
all produced in the Ottoman empire : but fince a more con- 
verfant knowledge of Perfia has been obtained, it appears that 
the Turkifh merchants were ufed to refort to the provinces of 
Ghilan and Shirwan,* whence they tranfported large quantities 
of this commodity to the European factories of the Levant. 

The Peiftan filk trade continued to flow in this channel, 
until the year 1739, when the Ruflia Company of England having 
procured the fan&ion of Parliament.f fent their factors into 
Ghilan to eftablifh a commerce* which fhould have for its ob- 
ject the purchafe of filk, and the vent of Englim manufactures. 
They received a cordial encouragement from Reza Kouli, who 
at that period, governed Perfia in the abfence of his father, then 

* Situate on the weft fide of the Cafpian fra, where there is abundant growth of 
filk, but of a coarfer kind, than that of Ghilan, wh eft is ctfeeroed the fined in Perfia. 

f They were vigoroufly oppofed in England by the Levant Company,, who aware 
of the injury which they would fultain by the Cafpian trade, rcprclented to Parliament 
that their chatter, an cxclufive one, would be violently infringed by fuch pcrmiffion 
being granted to the RulBa merchants. 


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engaged in the Indian expedition » and they remained in Ghilan 
until the year 1748, when the general tumult and devaluation, 
which followed the death of Nadir, compelled them to retire and 
abandon an extentive amount of property. 

It is feen that previoufly to the difl'olution of the factory at 
Ghilan, the court of Peteriburgh began to entertain jealoufies of 
the Englilh eftablifliment in Perfia, and from their own growing 
knowledge of commerce and navigation, became defirous of poffef* 
fing a trade which naturally pertained to their country. The go- 
vernment of Perfia had largely contributed to increafe this jealoufyv 
by a diitinguiftied encouragement toall Ertglifh adventurers, whom 
it faw independent of RulTia, its conflit utional enemy, and capable 
alfo of enriching the kingdom, by their fuperior null and fpirit in 
trade , but above all, Perfia was defirous of employing the Englilk 
in the conftruction of veffels of war* that it might acquire the 
dominion of the Cafpian fea. 

The firlt caufe of the difpleafure and alarm, of the court of 
Peterlburgh, at the proceedings of the Englilh factory in Ghilan, 
arofe from the conduct of the principal agent, John Elton,* 
who, on a difagreement with his aflbciates, entered into the fervice 
of N&lir Shah, by whom he was inverted with certain territories 
bordering on the Cafpian fea, and created the commander of a 

• See Hanway'i Travels, for a relation of fojae part of the Adventures of thi« 
enterprising perfon. 



fquadron, with which he himfelf, with infinite ability and labor i 
had furniflied the Perfian government. 

On the 14th of March, our veflel, filled up to the hatches, 
the decks alfo ftrewed over with bales and paffengers, got under 
way, but afoul wind foon fetting in, we came to an anchor. 
From the manner in which thefe veflels are navigated, laden, and 
altogether managed, I fliould be furprized if fhipwrecks were not 
frequent in this fca. The cabin was (luffed fo full of parcels and 
baggage, that thofe to whom it was allotted, were obliged to crawl 
in, and then they found only a fcanty length and breadth, fleeping 
or awake : the paffengers I perceived were all petty trader^, who 
having embarked a certain property on the veflel, accompanied it 
in perfon for there is not a fufficient credit or good faith eftablifli- 
cd in Perfia, to enable merchants to confign their effects to fac- 
tors. The foreign trader therefore is ncceflitated to become a 
fupercargoe, an occupation which for the firft time, I faw in the 
letter of the word, verified by the adventurers fitting immediately 
upon their wares, whence they ftirred but feldom, and were never 
long abfent : of thefe people I numbered not lefs than feventy, who 
were fpread over the deck, or packed in the cabin and boat ; It was 
foon feen that the matter and mariners were equally ignorant of 
their profeflion j he could fcarcely difcriminate the points of the 
compafs or throw the lead ; and the men, though expert at the ufeof 
the tailor's needle, and the implements of cookery, would among 
the moft clumfy of our failors, have been termed landfmen. 


1 t 

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When I beheld this ill-conitru&ed bark lumbered with goods and 
paUtngcrs, and its unfltilful crew, I could not but entertain appre- 
henfioni of our fafety, efpecially in a fea fo tempeftuous as the 

On the 17th, we got under fail, and aftifted by a favorable 
wind, we anchored on the 22d, about ten leagues to the north- 
ward of the port of Baku ; and on the 24th, reached the en- 
trance of the harbour, when the wind which had been blowing 
firong from the eaftward, fuddenly changed, and came from the 
land with extreme violence } but the vicinity of the fhore kept 
the fea down, and probably prevented our deftrucYion. The 
Ruffians, trufting to the ftrength of their anchors and cables, 
which were of the moft fubftantial kind, went to deep j nor did 
they once endeavour to prepare the veffel for the fea v in the event 
of its parting from the anchors, or ufe any means of aflifting the 
cable which was feverely (trained ; fome of the more animated of 
them would occafionally open their eyes, and call out on God's 
mercy to inciter them from the fury of the ftorm. It abated 
on the 26th, when we entered the port of Baku, and faluted a 
Ruffian frigate, lying there, with all the fwivels and mufquets 


on board, without regard of order or count. The agent of our 
veffel attended the commanding officer, and in hit report men- 
tioned the ftory of his European paflcnger. It is to be noticed 
that the Turks and Perfians, make a difference between a Ruffian 
and a native of Europe, calling the one a Feringhee, and the other 

a Roofs. 


a Roofs. In this diftinftion is alfo included a fuperior eftimation 
of the Europeans to whom they afcribe a more cxtenfive genius and 
knowledge; and what I thought extraordinary, the like nominal 
difference is entertained by all the lower clafc of fouthern 

On board of the frigate, whither I was fumraoned, I related 
the motives and general track of my journey, and was received 
with a warmth of hofpitality, to which neither my appearance ; 
being clad in a very ordinary drefs, or my unfupported reprefen- 
tation had a claim. I now became informed of the general peace 
in Eun pe ; and it was with a deep felt mortification, I learned 
from a foieigner, the cnti e fcparation of the American Colonies 
and their numerous people. The frigate was to fail the next day 
to Enzillee, to be ftauon d in that quarter, for the protection of 
the province of Ghilan, the chief of which had fometime before 
difpatched an envoy to the Ruffian camp, in Crim Tartary,* to 
reprefent his dread of Aga Mahomed, and to folicit the aid of the 
Ruffians. The agent had returned, and was accon panied by a 
Ruffian officer, who had traveled from the camp to Baku in 
twenty days. Part of the journey lay through the country of the 
Lefgui Tartars, who are a favage people and proverbially hoftile to 
ftrangers > But from a dread of the Ruffian troops, now advanced 

* Then commanded by general Pot cm kin, who was inverted .with the govern- 
ment of the Crim and the power of controlling the affairs of Aftracan, 


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to their frontier, they had permitted this party to pafs unmolefted. 
The officer who fpoke the Turkifli language fluently, feemed to be 
an ingenious active man, and well fitted for a fervice of enterprise. 

The Ghilan envoy, then proceeding on the frigate, expreffed 
a furprize to fee me, whom he thought a Mahometan, eating at 
the fame board with the Ruffian gentlemen ; but when he faw a 
barber commencing an operation on my beard, which I took the 
opportunity of having ftiaved, he evinced great amazement and 
indignation ; nor did he, until repeatedly informed of my real 
character, ceafe his reprehenfion of the act; during the procefs 
of which, he threw on me many a look of contempt ; when the 
barber began to cut off the muftachios, he feveral times in a 
peremptory manner required him to defift, and feeing them gone, 
now faid he, of whatever country or fecTl you may be, your dif- 
grace is complete, and you look like a woman. 

Tuus after a growth of fifteen months, fell my beard, which 
in that period had increafed to a great magnitude, both in length 
and breadth j though it had been fomewhat flirivellcd by the feverity 
of the late winter; when you advert to the general importance of 
an Afiatic beard, to the efTential fervices which mine had rendered, 
and to our long and intimate aflbciation, I truft that this brief 
introduction of it to your notice will not be deemed impertinent. 
This operation of cutting it, ought however to have been poll- 
poncd till my arival at Aftracan; for my European face with an 
Afiatic drefs, made me an object of general remark and enquiry 
Vol. II. F f among 


among the Peruana ; nor did I cfcapc the cenfure of the Armenians, 
who are taught to eftcem the beard a badge of refpecT, and even . 
fencYity, recommended to their example by the patriarchs and 
primitive Chriftnns, and when they conform in European coun- 
triea to the cuftom of (having it, they are ridiculed by all the 
ftau uher brethren of their tribe. 

Oti the 27th, I went on board the frigate, then getting 
under way, and f .w the feamen execute their work in an active, 
fkilful manner. They hove up the anchor, and fet fail with an 
expertnels, which would not have difcredited the crew of an 
Englifti fiiip of war. The captain procured me a paflage from 
a Greek merchant, who had come to take leave of him, and gave 
me a paflport requiring my admiffion into the town of Baku, 
and that no moleftation fhould be offered me by the Perfian 
government j and the fecond lieutenant of the frigate, who had 
been my interpreter and had taken a willing part in adjufting my 
little wants, gave me a letter of introduction to an officer of the 
Ruffian navy, whole name was Ivan Andreits.* The Greek carried 
me to his apartment in a karavanfera, which is exclufively appro* 
priated to the ufe of Chriftians and Sooni Mahometans. 

Ivan Anorkits, during the laft Ruffian war with the Turks, 


• Or Andrew Vita, figntfying in the Ruffian language, John the Con cf Andrew. 
This mode of defigrutiou it held the mod honorable among the ancient titles of K ulfia, 
and is exemplified, in the prefent grand Puke, who ii particularly known, b/ the 
•amc of i'aul r-ttrowit*. 


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commanded a privateer, the property of his family, in the Medi- 
terranean, where having performed fome gallant actions, he was 
promoted by the emprefs to the rank of captain in the navy j 
and retiring afterwards to Aftracan, he obtained from government 
the cxclufive priviledge of exporting, for a certain term, iron and 
fteel into Perfia. As we both were a little converfant in the 
lingua franca, a language commonly fpoken on the coafts of 
the Mediterranean, a familiar acquaintance was foon produced ; 
and the influence which he had acquired at Baku, enabled me now, 
a part of his family, to pafs my time very pleafantly. 

The town of Baku, in the province of Shirwan, is fituateon 
the north fide of a bay, and forms nearly an equilateral triangle 
with one of the fides extending in a parallel with the ftiore. It 
is, I imagine, about a mile in circumference, and crouded with in- 
habitants, mod of whom are engaged in commerce. 

The bay is capacious and fheltered by the land, againft all 
winds except the fouth, whofe violence is alfo much broken by 
the intervenfion of two fmall iflands. The fouthern and largcft 
of thole iflands, was, according to information of the people, 
united to the continent, which in that Quarter prefents a low 
termination, but it had been infulated by the influx of the fea, 
whofe waters have evidently encroached on the weft em (hore of 
the Cafpian, in the courfe of the laft forty years. 

Baku, at the period of Mr. Han way's travels, into Perfia,' 
had a double wall on the eaftern face j but the exterior one is now 

F f 2 levelled 


levelled by the rife of the fea, and its foundation brought within 
water-mark. The province of Shirwan produces a large quantity 
of filk, of which about four hundred tons are annually imported 
at Aftracan ; faffron of a good quality is alfo produced there, and 
constitutes a valuable article of trade. A focietv of Moultan 
Hindoos, which has long been eftabliflied in Baku, contributes 
largely to the circulation of its commerce j and with the Armenians, 
they may be accounted the principal merchants of Shirwan. The 
Hindoos of this quarter, ufually embark at Tatta,. a large infulac 
town in the lower traft of the Indus, whence they proceed ta 
Baflbrah, and there accompany the karayans which are frequently 
parting into Perfia ; fbme alfo travel inland to the Cafpian fea, by 
the road of Kandahar and Herat ; but the number is fmall, and 
they grievoufly complain of the opprefiions and infults of the 

On the 31ft of March, I vifited the Ataftighah, or place of 
fire} and on making myfelf known to the Hindoo mendicants, who. 
refided there, I was received among thefe fons of Brimha, as a 
brother; an appellation they ufed, on perceiving that I had ac- 
quired fome knowledge of their mythology, and had vifited their 
moft facred places of worfhip. This religious retirement, where 
the devotees worfhip their deity in the femblance of fire, is a 
fquare of about thirty yards, furrounded with a low wall, and 
contains many apartments in each of which is a fmall volcano 

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of fulphurcous fire, ifluing from the ground through a furnace 
or funnel, conftrudted in the form of an Hindoo altar. 

This fire is appropriated to the ufes of worfhip, cookery, and 
fortifying the feeble Hindoos againlt the rigor of the winter feafon. 
On clofmg the funnel, the flame is immediatly extinguiihed, when 
a hollow found is heard, by applying the ear to the aperture, ac- 
companied with a ftrong and cold current of air, which is inflamed 
at pkafure by placing near it any illuminated matter. The flame 
is of a pale clear colour, without a perceptible fmoke ; and emits 
a vapor ftrongly impregnated with fulphur, which confiderably 
impeded my refpiration, until by fitting on the ground I brought 
my head lower than the level of the furnace. The Hindoos had a 
wan emaciated appearance, and were opprefled by an hectic cough, 
which continued to affect me during my ftay at the Ataflighah. 
The ground within the cnclofure, abounds in this fubterraneous 
air, which iffues from artificial channels ; but in thefe con- 
tracted fpaces, it feems only capable of producing flame by the 
application of a foreign fire. Exclufive of the fires pertaining- 
to the Hindoo apartments, a large one arifing from a natural 
cleft in an open place, inceffantly burns, whence it would feem 
that no extraneous object is required to impart an illumina- 
tion to the larger evaporations of this air. On the outlide of 
the wall are feen many of thefe volcanos, which have the ap- 
pearance of lime-kilns, and one of them is conveniently adapted 
by the Hindoos to the ufes of a funeral pile. The general fpacc 



which contains this volcanic fire, forms a low flat hill flanting 
towards the fca, the foil of which confifts of a fandy earth inter- 
mixed with ftones. No mountainous land is fecn from the Atafh- 
ghah, nor any violent eruptions of flame ; nature feems here to 
have adopted a gentle and inoffenfive medium of difcharging her 
difcordant atoms, which in other quarters of the globe (hake 
her with convulfions, and pour around a horrid dcvaftation. 

In the defcription of this natural phenomenon, I have cau- 
tioufly adhered to the fimple fact, without prefuming to difcufs its 
caufe or properties. Thefe are branches of friencc, I am little 
Hulled in, and ill-enabled to elucidate. Had the opportunities 
which have been thrown in my way fallen to a Cavendiih, or 
a Pncillcy, the ftrongcft and moft ornamental pillars of the fa- 
bric of natural philofophy ; a larger fcope of knowledge might 
have been opened to the world, and talents which have been 
long beheld with admiration, rendered (till more confpicuous. 

The black and white naptha is found in the province of 
Shirwan, in great plenty } the firft floats thinly on the furface 
of certain fprings or ponds, whence it is collected and preferved 
in jars } it feems to poffefs many of the properties of camphire, 
and is fuccefsfully employed in allaying external pains and inflamed 
tumours. The black naptha or bitumen, is produced in the fame 
manner as the the white, but more abundantly and on larger 
pieces of water, and with a fcum three or four inches thick, of 
the confidence of tar. The houfes of Baku moft of which have 


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flat roofs, arc covered on the top with this material, which is 
found a fubftantial defence againft the rain j and when formed 
into fmall cakes or balls with a mixture of fand, is commonly 
ufed by the lower clafs of people as a fubititute for the fuel of 
wood, which in this province is thinly produced 

This quarter of Shir wan in afpeft and the nature of its foil, 
refembles the province of Khoralan j there is the fame want of 
wood and large ftreams, and in the winter the air is equally bleak 
and piercing } with the difference that in Shirwan it is fubjefl 
to fogs, which, I apprehend, are caufed by the vicinity of the 
Cafpian fea. The foil yields abundant crops of good wheat and 
barley, the bread of which conftitutes the food of the common 
people j the higher ranks only are enabled to procure rice, which 
is chiefly imported from Mazanderan and Ghilan. The mutton 
is fat and well tailed, being of the large tailed flieep, and is fold 
at the rate of one penny and three halfpence per pound. Ap- 
ples, pears, grapes, and chefnuts, all of a good kind, are pro- 
duced in plenty. And a wine is manufactured by the Arme- 
nians, at the town of Shahmachee,* which in flavor and fubltance, 
is not unlike the red wine of Bourdeaux j were the grapes caiefully 
cultivated, and the procefs well underftood, this wine would be 
much efteemed in Europe. The province of Shirwan has Derbent 
inclunvely on the north j the Cafpian fea on the eaft ; the territory. 

* The former capital of that province. 



of Aftara on the fouth; and parts of Georgia and the diiVtcTs.of 
Gunjah on the weft. 

Old Shahmachee, the former capital, is fituated about feventy 
miles inland of Baku, and for its trade, wealth, and population, 
was, after Ifpahan, ranked among the moil flourifliing cities of 
Pedis. To punitti a rebellion, which the inhabitants had raifed 
againil the government of Nadir Shah, this city was rafed and 
depopulated ; but that the empire might not be deprived of a 
mart, fo happily placed for foreign commerce, that prince formed 
about ten miles to the fouth-weft of the old city, a new Shah- 
machee.* Fultah Alt Khan, the chief of Shirwan, rcfides ge- 
nerally at Detbent, but he gratifies a rapacious difppfuion, by 
making frequent circuits through the province, which he feverely 
harraflcs. The vicinity of general Potcmkin's army has made 
him fearful of its nearer approach ; and he is now endeavouring 
by every token of refpecl: and acknowledged dependance, to ob- 
tain a favourable connection with the Ruffian empire. 

Having laid before you, the more material part of rny ob- 
fervations on Shirwan, I cannot refill the impulfe of calling your 
notice, for a moment to the difpofition and temper of a i'raall 

• An extenfive trade of fdk formerly was maintained between Shahmachee and the 
Black fca, through which channel, large quantities of that convnodity were imported 
into Turkey, and thence into Europe. This tra<!e though flill cxifting is much di- 
minifhed fince the Ruffians, by obtaining the dominion of the Cafpian, have made a 
monopoly of the Pcrfian (ilk. 


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FcyRStEk's Travels. 133 


but extraordinary portion of its prcfent inhabitants. Human 
nature takes a portion of its prominent features from national 
prejudices, from education, and from government ; nor rauft we 
exclude climate from its (hare of the formation. This remark 
arofe from a view of the Atalhghah at Baku, where a Hindoo 
is found fo deeply tinctured with the cnthufiafm of religion, that 
though his nerves be conftitutionally of a tender texture, and 
bis frame relaxed by age,* he will journey through hoftile regions, 
from the Ganges to the Volga, to offer up a prayer at the 
fhrine of his God. 

When the ambitious ftrides of the Ruffian empire, on the 
fide of Turkey, by the late acquifitions of the Crim, are atten- 
tively coniidered, and its rapid progrefs into the mod valuable 
provinces of Perfia, we are compelled to beftow applaufe on the 
policy of a government which has fo dextroufly ordered its mea- 
furcs, that thefe valuable additions of power and wealth are daily 
accumulated without attracting the notice of Europe; nay al- 
moft without its knowledge. Waving any investigation of the 
political effects which may fpring from the rife or fall, or the 
encreafing grandeur of nations, I will here only obfervc, that the 
influence acquired by Ruflia, in the north-weft quarter of Per- 
fia, has been accompanied with reciprocal benefits, and that were it 

* Among the Hindoos at the Atalhghah, was an old man, a native of Dehli, wh« 
had vifited all the celebrated temples of northern and foutbern India, and whom 1 after- 
wards faw at Aftracan. 

Vol. II. G g wholly 


wholly annexed to the Ruffian dominion, the body of people 
would reap ejfcntial advantages, then* perfons and property would 
derive a fecurity, of which they have been long deprifed, and by 
a fubjeaion to the orders of a civilized, aftivc government, they 
would neceflarHy become ufeful fubjeas and profitable member* 
©f fociety. 

The kingdom of Pcrfia, fince the period of the Afghan In- 
vafion,* has prefented an unvaried fcenc of warfare and attrac- 
tion ; where every fpecies of a favage rapine has been exercifed 
with bcundlels fway ; and at this day, Perfia may be faid to 
exhibit a vaft tomb, piled up with the viaims of ambition, 
avarice, and revenge. It were difficult to fay whether more of 
its people in the laft fixty years, have fallen in tbe field, or by 
the hand of the executioner and aflaffin. For they have had a 
full occupation, efpecially in the latter part of the government 
of Nadir Shah, whole revenues were at length drained from the 
blood of his fubjea. 

The cruelties committed by this prince have been diffufely 
treated ; all clafles of men, even our boys at fchool, are con- 
vcrfant in the barbarous exploits of Khuli Khan , it may not how- 
ever be fuperfluous to notice fome faas, which feem to have largely 
contributed to fully the memory of Nadir, who at one period of 
his life, maintained no ill founded claims to heroic fame. At 

• Which happened about the year 1720. 


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the clofc of this prince's reign, his body and his mind indi- 
cated equal figns of diforder, which was fuppofed to have been 
caufed or augmented by domeftic treachery, and the efforts of 
exceffive fatigue. 

Conspiracy and rebellion arofe all around him, and he had 
no fooner quelled the infurrcttions of a province, than his de- 
parture was marked by the murder of the officers and fucceflivC 
revolts. Seeing his authority endlefsly trampled on, and that 
partial puniftiment was inefficient to give it ftrength, he gave 
loofq to a perhaps eonftitutional ferocity, which had been tem- 
pered by his uiiderftanding, but which thefe events inflamed 
to madnefs, and often inftigated to the indifcriminate extirpa- 
tion of a difVricTt. But what feemed mod to embitter and dif- 
turb his mind, was the perfidy of his family ; the defection of 
thole from whom he had vainly expected aid and attachment. 
His favorite fon and apparent fucceflbr, had been entrufted with 
the regency of Perfia, during the expedition to Hindofran, and 
prefiiming on the dtftant occupations of his father, he had pre- 
pared meafures, it is alledged, to afcend the throne. 

The increafmg malady,* of Nadir, fharpened by public and 
domeftic calamity, ultimately rendered him a monftcr of cruelty ; 

and his rage extending ufually to thofe, whofe offices required 

-. .... " • 

* An extreme cofiivenefs. 

G g 2 an 


an attendance on his perfon,* he was approached with a con- 
ftant dread. Wearied out at length by the undeviating courfe 
of his tyranny and cruelties, which like a peftilence had thinned 
the land, fome of the principal officers of the court, Simulated 
alfo, it is faid, by one of his nephews, aflaflinated him in the 
month of April, 1747* while he was encamped in the northern 
quarter of Khorafan, not far diftant from the place of his birth. 

Having held out that fide of Nadir's characler which ex- 
cites only difguft and horror, it were but fimple juftice to his 
memory, to notice thofe paflages of his life which will place 
him in a light, where princes ever appear in the moft grate- 
ful colours. On the event of his fucceffes in India, he ex- 
empted his Peril an dominion from all taxes, for the fpace of 
three years ; and after discharging the military arrears, which 
amounted to four millions fterling, he gave the army a gra- 
tuity of fix months pay, with a like fum to the civil fervants 
of the camp. 

. After the battle of Karnat, when Nadir had overthrown 
the empire of India, and poflefled the perfon of the king, one 
of the Moghul omrah's reprefentcd to him, that among the Dchli 
troops were an hundred thoufand horfes fit for field fcrvice, 

• It is laid that the officers in waiting, inftead of entering on the ordinary topics 
of a court, were ufed to make anxious and unfeigned enquiries into the (late of the 
fliah's bedy, and ever exprefled much joy, at an imperial evacuation, they ima- 
gined would fecure an exiftence for the day. ■ 



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and which his order would immediatly produce. Nadir Shah, in 
the language of a prince, obferved that he granted to the Moghul 
army, an unreferved quarter, which mould not be infringed ; 
that the bread of an Afiatic foldier depends on his horfe, which 
were he deprived of, himfelf and his family would be reduced 
to beggary j that it is repugnant to humanity to treat thofe with 
rigor, whom fortune has thrown into our power, and it was 
his determined will, that the Indian foldiers fliould not be in 
any degree infulted or molefted.* 

Nadir Shah, in the profperous periods of his life, held 
out an ample proteaion to merchants of every feet and nation, 
and zealoufly fought to eftablifh a Hberal commerce throughout 
Perfia, which he faw poflefled of various valuable commodities. 
When the mercantile property of Mr. Hanway, was plundered 
at Afterabad, that gentleman prefered his complaint in perfon to 
the (hah, who directing an inveftigation into the account, iflued 
an effectual order on the governor of the province for a full re- 
ftitution of the effects or the amount. 

In the vigorous attempts, which this prince made to introduce 
the European art of navigation and (hip-building into his 
country } he evinced a genius rarely found in the mind of an Afiatic. 
It was his intention, by the aflilTance of John Elton, to erect 
fortified ftations on the eaft fide of the Cafpian fea, that a (lability 

• Frazer'* hiftory of Nadir Shah. 


mi^ht be given to bjs conquers in lyhievn, and tfce Tartars checked 
in their a>pre4ajipn$ on the province o/ Afttrithad. After Elton; 
had, with va# la.bor, completed the buikhng of a wrffcl, in which 
i*e encountered otytijiats difficulties, a* weU from a jeabufy of the 
Perfians of his rifmg favor with the fhah as difgufl: at an irkfome 
fervicei he was direacd to examine the Tartar ftiore of theCafpian, 
and to make choice of an eligible fituation for a fettletnent. But 
the coaft, according to the report of Elton* being found deftitute 
of good water, the defign was relinquilhad. 

Nadir Skah, contrary to the general character of the 
Perfians, who are impreffed with a more perfecting fpkit than 
any other Mahometan nation, gave a common toleration to the wor- 
fhip of the inhabitants, whether Chriftians, Hindoos, or Jews, and 
largely retrenched the power and; wealth of the priefts, who during 
the latter period of the Suffuee dynafty, had engrpffed the chief 
direction of government. That Nadir might incapacitate their 
revenge for the death of the mollah Baihi,* who h?d been ex- 
ecuted for refufing aflent to a plan of this prince for introducing 
the Sooni religion into Perfia, and to accommodate other falutary 
purpofes, he demanded an account of the vaft revenues which hat) 
been afligned to the church i they informed him, according to the 
tenor of Frafer's relation of this event, that their property was 
applied to the ufes, for which it had been allotted ; in Varies for 

• High-prieft. 


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the priefts, in the maintenance of numerous colleges and mofqucs, 
in which prayers were inceffantly offered up for the fuccefs of the 
arms of the prince, and of the profperity of the Perfian empire. 
. Nadir obferved to them, that experience had manifefted the 
inutility of their prayers, mice for the fpace of fifty years paft, 
the nation had been verging to decay, and ultimately had been re- 
duced by invafions and rebellion to a ftate of ruin ; when God's 
victorious inftru mem s, pointing to his army, had come to its relief, 
and were now ready to facrifice their lives to its defence and glory $ 
that the wants of thefe poor priefts, his foldiers, muft be fupplied, 
and he therefore determined that the greateft portion of the church 
lands mould be appropriated to their ufe. The mandate being 
imraediatly carried into execution > produced a revenue equal to 
three million of .fterting money. The priefts, enraged at this 
afiumption, exerted their utmoft abilities in ftirring up the army 
and the people againft the fhah ; but the former being compofed, 
in a large proportion, of the Sooni feci, ridiculed their fituation, 
and the body of ' the inhabitants, when they coniidercd that the 
edict would liberate them from a part of the general taxation, 
were not diftatisfied. 

Nadir Shah having accompliflied this purpofe, ordered the 
attendance of the chiefs of the people, and making a formal de- 
claration of the meafure which had been adopted, told the'm if 
they wanted priefts, they muft provide them at their own charge J| 
that having himfclf little occafion for their fervices, he would not 



contribute to their maintenance. Such was Nadir Shah before 
calamity had harrafled his mind, anddifeafe his body. The actions 
of men, however amply gifted by nature or improved by know- 
ledge, are ftrongly fhaped by the furrounding events of human life. 
Let the man whom we have but now viewed with admiration, 
towering down the tide of fortune with a fwelling fail, and 
marking his progrefs by confpicuous marks of glory and renown, 
be thrown on the rough fea of trouble, without a ftielter to cover 
him from its fury , or let him be ll retched on the couch of fick- 
nefs, hclplcfs, and racked with pain, we mall fpeedily ceafe from 
wonder and applaufe, and with difficulty credit the identity of the 

Having in detached pieces, and I fear with a wide deviation 
from order, defcribed the mod important events of the Perfian 
empire, from the Afghan invafion to the death of Nadir Shah, I 
could have wiflied briefly to connect that epocha with the prefent 
period j but no document has come to my knowledge, fufficiently 
authentic or clear, for the illuftration of the whole of this in- 

Previously to the adminiftration of Kareem Khan, many 
competitors for the throne of Perfia came forward, and en- 
countered a various tranfient fortune, until all the race of Nadir, 
and the Softs' were extirpated, except Shah Rock, the chief of 
Mufchid, a Iketch of whofe life, has been already noticed. Ka- 

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recm Khan,* from a marauding horfeman became the fuccefsful 
chieftain, and proclaiming himfelf the regent of the empire, 
during the minority of a defcendant of the Soli family, whom he 
pretended to have difcovcred, eftablifned his refidence at Shiraz. 
It appears that Saadut Khan, the brother of the regent, took Baf- 
forah f from the Turks after a year's fiege j and during the Pcr- 
fian government of that place, Kareem Khan gave diftinguilned 
indulgencics to the Englifti refidents eftablifhed there, whofe fac- 
tory and property, when the city fell into his pofieffion, were 
fully fecured to them. The adminiftration of Kareem Khan, 
was involved in a feries of hoftilities againft the Turks and 
Arabs, over whom, except the capture of Bafforah, he obtained 
but trivial advantages. 

At the period of the regent's death, which happened about 
the year 1778, Saadut Khan was ftationed with a fmall force 
at Baflbrah, and folicitous of fpeedily reaching Shiraz, the 
theatre of aftion, he abandoned Bafforah, which again ac- 
knowledged the power of the Turks. When Saadut Khan ap- 
proached Shiraz, he found the gates (hut againft him by a 
Zacchi Khan, a branch of his family, who fcizing on the 
city, and the perfon of Kareem Khan's fon, then a youth, an- 

* He made no fcruple of avowing, that in his youth he purfued the occupation 
of a robber, and that his foreteeth had been demolifbed by the kick of an afs, which he 
bad ftolen and was carrying oft*. 

t This event happened in the year 1774. 

Vol. II. H h nounced 


nounccd himfdf the ruler of fouthern Perfia, The young man 
having evinced a difpofition to favor the interefts of his uncle ; 
Zacchi Khan gave orders that he fhould be put to death. The 
fentence by a reverfe in no rare practice at a Mahometan court, 
was executed on himfelf, and Saadut Khan was admitted into 
Shiraz, with a participation of the affairs of government. He 
foon formed a combination againft his nephew, whom he ulti- 
mately depofed, on a charge of debauchery and a lavifli ex- 
penditure of the public treafure. 

During the ad mini ft rat ion of Kareem Khan, a body of 
troops had been fent to quell fome inArrrcdfion, in a dlftant 
part of the country, under an Ali Morad, who returning fucefs- 
ful, with an army difpofed to promote his purpofes, prefeted a 
claim to the government} the iflue of a civil war, profecutcd 
through a feries of depredation, murder, and treachery, gave Ali 
Morad the pofleffion of Shiraz, where he put to the fvvord, the 
whole family of Kareem Khan, with their adherents.* A Per- 
fian of Ifpahan, fpeaking to me of the actions of Ali Morad, and 
extolling his military genius, faid, that he pollened a fcimetar o£ 
a large fize and fuperior quality, on the blade of which were en- 
graved the names of the twelve imaums, the directors of its edge, 
and the fecuriry of its victories. 

• He was related f the family of Kareem Khan* it it faid, that on thi» event, 
three hundred perfons were maflacred. 


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The comment on the Mahometan's ftory, would in faft: tell 
us, that whilft the fword of Ali Morad is thus patronifed by 
his twelve faints, there is no fervicc, however entangled by the 
ties of faith and honor, that he may not cut afunder with im- 
punity, even with applaufe. Ali Morad, who has eftablilhed the 
feat of his government at Ifpahan, took Shiraz in 1778, or 1779, 
at which period, a gentleman of my acquaintance refided at Baf- 
forah, and has fince communicated to me fome tracts of the 
hiftory of Kareem Khan, and of thofe chiefs who appeared in 
action after his death. 

This gentleman whofe veracity and difcerning judgment 
may be confided in, draws a melancholy picture of the foutherrr 
provinces of Perfia. He fays, that the inteftine feuds and com- 
motions gave a pretext for the perpetration of every crime dif- 
graceful to human nature, and produced fuch daring acts of 
flagitioufnefs, that the people refembled demons rather than men. 
It was ufual, he fays, for one half of the inhabitants of a vil- 
lage, to keep watch at night, that they might not be murdered 
by the other, which if not equally vigilant became fubjeet to a 
fimilar fate. But enough of this fcene of blood, which degrades 
our race below the beafts of the field, and permit me in my 
defultory manner, to convey you again to the banks of the Cai- 
pian. It having been already noticed, that the dominion of this 
fea is vetted without competition in the empire of Ruflia, which 
has alfo obtained a ftrong influence in fome of the bordering 

II h 2 provinces, 


provinces, it may not be foreign to rational enquiry, to exa- 
mine the ftages by which Ruftia has arrived at this acceflion of 

In the year 1722, Peter the Great was folicited by Thamas 
Khan, the fon of the Shah Hufleyn, to aflift him in expelling 
the Afghans from Perfia, who had driven his father from the 
throne, and continued to hold poffeffion of an extenfive portion 
of the kingdom 'j and to Simulate Ruflia to the grant of this 
aid, the Perfian prince ftipulated to cede in perpetuity the 
provinces of Ghilan and Shirwan. This propofal being acceded 
to, Peter, accompanied by the emprefs Katherine, embarked at 
Aftracan with a large force, and proceeding along the weft coaft 
of the Cafpian, landed at Agrechan, in the province of Min- 
grelia, about two hundred miles to the fouthward of the mouth 
of the Wolga ; from thence he moved to the relief of Derbent, 
which had been befieged by the Afghans, and Rationing a party 
of three hundred men in the caftle, advanced a day's march into 


Perfia; where he was met by the deputies of Baku, and Shah- 
machee who fought his protection againft the Afghans, then 
making ftrenuous exertions to reduce thefc places. 

Peter was preparing to undertake the fcrvice, when a Tur- 
kifh envoy arrived in the camp, and reprefented, that his mailer 
having annexed Shahmachee to the Turkifh dominion, was much 
difpleafcd at the appearance of a Ruffian power in that quarter, 


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and that unlefs the emperor withdrew his forces, he was dire&ed 
to declare war againft Ruffia. 

Peter having lately felt the fuperior ftrength of the Turks 
in the unfortunate campaign of Pruth, and being then in a fo- 
reign country, deftitute of the refources neceflary for commen- 
cing hoftilities againft fo powerful an enemy, he confented to a 
peaceable return to his own dominions. The Turkifh envoy ac- 
companied the army to the northern limits of Perfia, where he 
remained until it had embarked for Aftracan. The party which 
had been lodged in the fort of Derbent did not join the army 
in its retreat, but at the folicitation of the inhabitants conti- 
nued in that ftation, until the Ruffians at a future period ap- 
peared on the Cafpian, while thole of Baku deprived of the hope 
of fuccour, received a body of Afghan troops into the town, 
and fubmitted to the government of Ifpahan. 

The Ruffians had conftructed a fmall fort on the river Millu 
Kenti, in the territory of the Lefghi Tartars, and garrifoned it 
with five hundred men, who after the departure of the grand army, 
were attacked by a large Afghan force and wholly deftroyed. 
Peter, it is faid, loft in this expedition, a third part of his troops, 
by ficknefs, fatigue, and onfets of the Lefghis ; a lofs the more 
mortifying, as it was then attended by a fubverfion of the fan- 
guine project he had formed, of extending his conqueft into the 
interior provinces of Perfia. 

It appears that this event was followed tn a Ihort time, by 



an ultimate and formal convention, between the courts of Con- 
ftantinople and Pctciiburgh, which ftipulated that Shahmachec, 
the territories of Armenia, Georgia, and Mclitaner, fliould be held 
•permanent appendages of the Port ; and that Peter fliould be left 
at liberty to profecute his defigns on the provinces of Perfia, 
bordering on the Cafpiau lea. 

In the latter end of the year 1722, the Pcrfian chief of Ghilan 
deputed an agent to Aftracan with powers to deliver up Reflid, 
the capital of the province, to a Ruffian garrifon, fliould it be 
immediately difpatched to the relief of the city, then inverted by 
the Afghans. The emperor afienting to the meafurc, difpatched 
by fea a thoufand men to Ghilan, but on their arrival they 
were refufed admittance by the inhabitants, who alarmed at the 
<lelay of the aid, and threatened with fevere vengeance if they 
formed any connection with the Ruffian government, had en- 
tered into a negotiation with the Afghan officer for the fur- 
render of the city. The Ruflian detachment formed an entrench- 
ment on the fea-fhore, where it remained until a reinforcement 
of four thoufand men came from Aftracan, with orders to force 
an entrance into Refhd ; but this fervice was not found necefTary, 
for on the arrival of the additional force, the gates of Refhd 
were immediately thrown open, and the whole province of Ghi- 
lan became fubject to Ruflia. 

The officer who commanded the auxiliary troops, had in 
his paflage down the Cafpian, touched at Baku, where he was 


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dire&ed to lodge a garrifon, conformably to a previous requi- 
fition of the Perfian governor, but the fuccour arriving too late, 
the place had fubmitted to an Afghan army. Peter anxious to 
acquire lb valuable an acquifition, difpatched in the courfe of the 
following year, 1723, a ftrong naval arnament from Aftracan, 
which entering the port of Baku,* took the fort after a fhort 
bombardment. It is faid that previoufly to this fiege, the Per- 
fians had never feen a mortar, and that when the Ruffian bomb- 
ketch was warped into its ftation, they ridiculed the attempt 
•f fo fmall a vcflel preparing to attack the fortj but the de- 
ftru&ion of the buildings, and the carnage which enfued, fpee- 
dily converted their contempt into aftoniftiment and fear. 

These leading lines of the progrefs and eftablilhment of the 
Ruffian power on -the Cafpian fea, are largely borrowed from 
the memoirs of a captain Bruce, who fcrved in Peter's army 
during the fir ft Perfian expedition, and who ieems to have made 
his obfervations with an accurate judgment ; he has certainly 
related them with limplicity and candor. His documents alfo 
correfponding with the information which I collected in Per- 
fia, this fketch is laid before you with the greater confidence. 
From the period at which Peter fixed his power in the pro- 
vinces of Shirvan and Ghilan, to the year 1732, when Nadir de- 

• This word, I am informed, is cempofed of the Pcrfwui words, Had and ku, fignify- 
ing a windy hill j it is certain that a ftrong wind generally prevails at that place. 




p ofcd Shah Thamas, and afiumed the diadem of Perfia, it is not 
fren that any material occurences interpofed to difturb the Ruf- 
fian territory, or commerce on the Cafpian. But when this me- 
teor of the call had blazed forth, and in its courfe cun fumed 
or difmaycd the furrounding nations, the Ruffians then invol- 
ved in domeftic commotion and intrigue, were compelled to eva- 
cuate their Cafpian dominion, with only the permiflion to hold 
a refident at the fea-port of Enzillee, for the management of the 
Ghilan filk-trade « 

Foltah Ali Khan, having within thefe late years, enga- 
ged in a defultory warfare with the Lefghi Tartars, fought the 
afliftance of the Ruffians, who after repelling the incurflons of 
the enemy, held for fome time pofiefiion of the fort of Derbent. 
It has been again reftored j but the conditions are not known, 
though we may infer from the policy of the court of Peters- 
burgh, which is not in the habit of retrenching its limits, that 
the caufe of withdrawing the garrifon of Derbent, did not pro- 
ceed from mere motives of liberality. 

That your knowledge of this quarter of Perfia may be more 
complete and fatisfa&ory, I have been prompted to annex in this 

• In the year 1746, an embafly was fent by the cmprefs Elizabeth to Nadir Shah, a 
relation of which has been publifiied by Mr. William Cooke, who accompanied it in 
the capacity of a furgcon ; and at that time it appears that except the EnzilJe factor 1-, 
and a commercial refidcncy at Derbent, the Ruffians did not poflefs any cftablifiwient 
in Perfia. 


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place, a furvey of the Cafpian fea made by Captain Bruce, in 
the year, 1723, by the order of Peter, after his return from 
Perfia. The relation of this furvey is deficient in the detail of 
bearings, and often of the foundings, nor is it known whether 
thcfe remarks were ever recorded, or have been omitted by the 
publifher ; but the information is much wanted, for except the 
Ruffians, other nations are ftill trivially acquainted with the 
coafts of the Cafpian feaj efpecially with that which confines 

Captain Bruce fays, " we received orders to go all round 
" the Cafpian fea to furvey and found it, and lay down in a 
" chart all the rivers, creeks, and bays, with all the different 
" foundings ; and for this fervice, had one of the flrongeft new 
" built galleys of forty oars, carrying two eighteen pounders in 
" her prow, twenty four fwivels, and three hundred men, at- 
" tended with four boats, two of eight oars, one of ten, and 
" another of twelve, each boat carrying one fwivel gun ; and 
*' two fub-engineers were appointed for my afiiftants. 

" The 1 8th of April 1723, went down to the mouth of 
11 the Volga,* and next morning proceeding from thence eaft- 
" ward, we pafied in very mallow water along the coaft, fo 
" very overgrown with weeds, that we were obliged to keep at 
u five or fix miles diftant from the fliore, in from ten to twelve 

* Forty miles below the city of Aflracan. 

Vofc. II. I i « feet 


".feet waterj and all the way, even for eight day* time, we 
" could find no place to land, even our fmalleft boats. We 
" faw two little iflands in the way, but we could not come 
* 4 at them for reeds, but we killed a great number of fea-fowl, 
* that have their nefts in thefe iflands, and had plenty of fifh 
M and fowl, all the way. We failed and rowed, as the wind 
" permitted, but came to an anchor every evening that no- 
** thing might efcape our obfervation. 

" On the 26th, we arived at the river Jaick, the mouth of 
" which is one hundred fathoms broad, and eighteen feet deep ; 
u we went to the town of Jaick, that (lands about one mile 
" up rhe river, which is well fortified, and has a flrong gar- 
" rifon of Ruffians and Tartars,* to keep the Kalmuck and 
** Nagayan Tartars in awe, and to prevent them from attack- 
" ing each other, as they live in perpetual enmity. 

" The Nagayans inhabit all the country from Aftracan to 
" the Jaick, all along the fea coaft, being two hundred and fifty 
" verfts f in extent } and the Kalmucks poflefs that vaft tra& of 
" land from Saratoff to the great defert of Beriket, and that 
" traft to the fouth of the Jaick, all along the fhore to the 
" river Yembo r which is 93 verfts from this place; we flayed 

* The inhabitants of that track of Tartary, which has been completely fubdued by 
Ruflia and now a ftationary people. 

t At the common calculation of two thirds of a mile to a verft, this diftancc is 
170 miles. 

u only 

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'« only one day, at Jaick,* and provided ourfelves with frefli meat 
" and water. 

" Being informed by the governor of the place, that there 
" was a large gulf to the eaftward, extending to the river Yembo, 
" but too (hallow to admit our galley. I fent one of our 
11 engineers to go round and furvey it, and join us again on 
" the oppofitc point, for which 'we proceeded immediately j and 
" failing fouth, we anchored on the 30th, between the ifland 
" of Kiilala and the point of the main, in fix fathoms water, 
** in view of the mountains of Kanayan, and from whence w« 
" had a clean and deep Ihore. At this place begin the ter- 
" ritories of the Turkiftan and Turcomanian Tartars. During our 
" ftay, waiting the return of the engineer, we laid in plenty 
" -of wood and water, and diverted ourfelves with fowling and 
,c fiihingj we caught here a Beluga of upwards of fix yards 
" long and thick in proportion, from the roe of which we 
" made excellent caviar, which lafted us above a month. 

" Our engineer with the boats joined us, on the 10th 
" of May, who reported that in the furvey of the bay, he 

• The Ruffians fend annually, two or three barks from Aftracan to Uir Gunge, a 
Turcoman mart, fituated on this river, above the town of Jaick, whence in return for 
European commodities, as (reel, bar-iron, and remnants of broad-cloth, they import 
furs, and fait fi(h. The Jaick continues frozen from the month of December to the 
middle of March, during which period, the Uir Gunge trade ceafes ; nor do the Tartars, 
who are chiefly merchants of Bochara, and Samur Kund, reftdc at that place, after the 
departure of the Ruffian vcfTels. GtoacE Forjter. 

I i 2 

" found 


*' found only from five to eight feet water ; that the whole 
" {hore was fo covered with reeds, that they could only land 
" at the mouth of the river Yembo, which was both broad 
" and deep. We left the ifland of Kulala, on the nth, on 
M our way to the gulf of Ukander, where we arrived on the 
" 26th j all along this coaft there is a great depth of water, fo 
" that we could land with our galley on any part of it. 

u A great number of fmall rivers fall into the fea from 
" the mountains, but we could not learn their names although 
u I attempted to get information, by fending the twelve oared 
" boat with an officer and twenty four men, and an interpreter 
u to fpeak to the people on (horej but they no fooncr came 
« near enough, than the Tartars let fly a volley of arrows at 
u our people, who returned the falute with a difcharge of their 
" mufquetry at them ; and we fired one of our great guns from 
" the galley at them, which made them retire to the mountains 
ct in good hafte. They always appeared in great parties, on 
" horfeback, and well armed, and we faw feveral of their hords 
M or camps at a great diftance, from which they move at plea- 
" fure, and wander from place to place, for thofe Tartars have 
- no fettled abode ; they contined to attend us every day in great 
u parties, to watch our motions, out of the reach of our guns, 
" and they difappeared entirely on our arrival in the gulf of If- 
.** kander, which is one hundred and eighty four verfts from the 
•J ifland of Kulala. In this gulf which is thirty verfts in length 

" and 

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n and eighteen broad, we found near the fliore froia five to fix 
" fathoms water, with a clear ground and exceeding good an- 
" chorage.'* 

On the 10th of April, the veffel in which I had embarked, 
failed for Baku, and coafting the north-eaft head-land of the 
bay, anchored at Abfhhorah,* a road-ftead on a rocky fliore, at 
which place mod of the paflengcrs came on board. The Ar- 
menians and Greeks had remained to celebrate the Eafter-feftival 
at Baku, where they have been permitted to creel: a fmall chapel. 
The Pcrfians of Shirwan, whether, from a frequent intercourfe 
with the Greeks, who introduce much wealth into their coun- 
try, or from a dread of the Ruffian power, ftiew a lefs diflike 
to the Chriftians than thofe of the eaftern provinces.-f- 

Not being confidered a ftaunch member of the faith, or 
thought to poflefs a fufficient fancYity of manners, I was not 
invited to affift at the conclufion of the Eaftcr-faft. But, mucli 
againft my will, I became a partaker of it on board the veflel. 
On the morning of Eafter-funday, long before break of day, 
the whole fhip's crew, from the matter to the cook, rufhed tu- 
multuoufly into the cabin, where I was afleep, and bellowed out 
their prayers to the figures of the virgin, and their patron, Saint; 

• A Pcrfian compound word, figaifying fait water. 

t A fociety of Pcrfians, of the Sooni faith, is eilablifhcd at Shahmachce, and its 
neighbourhood, who are governed by a chief of their own tribe, a proprietor of cer- 
tain diilria* held in Feu of Futtah Ali Khan. 



Nicholas, for the fpcedy deliverance of Chrift from the grave, 
which as foon as was fuppofed to be effected, they i'aluted each 
other by a kifs, faying " Chrift has rifen." 

During the fervor of this occupation, I was wholly over- 
looked and trampled on. They did not however neglect me in 
the more fubftantial part of the feftival ; for though in bed, they 
placed near me a large pudding ftuffed with meat, which they 
earneftly defired me to eat i obferving that as I muft have in- 
curred a fevere reftraint during their rigorous lent, it was now 
neceffary to regale and be merry. They themfelves implicitly con- 
formed to the advice ; and from the extraordinary quantity of 
flefli meat which they haftily devoured, during thefe holidays, 
it feemed that they eat as much for the purpofe of compenfa- 
ting loft time, as the gratification of appetite. 

On the 13th of April, every perfon and every parcel that 
could poflibly find a place being embarked, the veflcl failed, paf- 
fing between a fmall ifland of rocks and the main. Oh looking 
around, I was amazed at the crowd of paflengers, and the lum- 
ber that was fcattered on the deck and fufpended from the fides. 
I could not have thought it poflible for fuch a fpace to contain 
fo much matter. The lodging allotted to me, admitted fcantily 
of my length, and of lying only on one fide; but I was fortu- 
nate in an interior ftation, which faved me from being trod on 
by the other paflengers, over whom lay my common path. 
When placed at the fame board with a Ruffian, an Armenian, 

a Greek, 

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a Greek, and a Perfian, I ufed to invcftigate with a pleafing cu- 
riofity the caufe which had linked in the bonds of fociety, five- 
perfons of different nations, manners, and prejudices. The union 
was manifeftly formed by felf-intereft, which when refined by 
a knowledge of the world, induces men to feck profit and plea- 
pleafure through various channels, and in the purfuit, which is 
eager and vigorous, many are prompted to break down the 
ftrongeft fences which education or fuperftition can plant. 

On the evening of the 20th, having feen two fifhing-boats 
which marked the vicinity of the Aftracan fhore, our bark came 
to an anchor in three fathom water, but no land in fight. In 
the evening the wind began to blow with violence, and raifed 
the fea ; which in the Cafpian is foon agitated, having a fhort 
irregular motion and breaking with great force. I had not been 
long in bed, when the Greek gentleman expreffed an apprehen- 
fion that the veffel was touching the ground, which was foon 
verified by a rough Ihock of the rudder. A fcene of confu- 
fion, marked with various tokens of diftrefe now enfued. Some 
were bawling out in the Ruffian, the Armenian and in the Per- 
fian language, while others were lamenting their fate in Greek 
and Turkifh. 

Had I not been fo efTentially intcrefted in the event, which 
bore a very unpromifing afpe£t, the diverfity of modes adapted 
in expreffing a fenfe of this difafter, would have afforded mat- 
ter of curious notice. Every man was imploring the divine in- 

' terpofitioa 


tct pofition in his own manner and language ; but my attention was 
chiefly attracted by a Perfian who had taken refuge in the ca- 
bin, a place he imagined of the more fafety, from the mailer 
having taken his ftation there. In a piteous tone, he begged 
that I would accommodate him with a pillow, that he might 


compofe himfelf, and await his laft hour with refignation ; amidfl: 
his ejaculations which were loud and fervent, he did not once 
mention the name of Mahomet. The whole force of his prayers 
were levelled at All, on w hom he beftowed every title that could 
denote fancYity, or military prowefs ; he called on him by the 
name of the Friend of God, the Lord of the faithful and the Bran- 
diiher of the invincible fword, to look down on his fervant, and 
fhield him from the impending evil ; thinking alfo to obtain the 
more grace with the father, he would occafionally launch out 
into the praifes of his two fons.* 

The bales of Alk, with which the cabin was filled to half 
its height, being removed forward, the veflel which ftruck only 
at the ftern, was for a time relieved ; but the wind and fea in- 
creafing, our danger became imminent. I propofed to the Greek, 
to throw over fome part of the cargoe, as the beft mode of la- 
ving the reft, as alfo our lives ; and he was difpofed to try the 
expedient, had he not been obftrutted by the paflcngers, who 
bitterly inveighed againft the propofal, and the adventuring Fe- 

• Hulfin and Huflcyn. 


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ringhee its author, who having nothing to lofe, they faid, was 
little interefted in the ifluc. Yet I can with truth aver, that in 
no fituation of difficulty in which I have been occafionally in- 
volved, did I ever feel a ftrongcr reluctance of quitting the " warm 
precincts of day " I could not with adequate fortitude reconcile 
the idea of being loft on a fliorc, which I had fo long fought 
with labor and anxiety, and which I had approached only to 
meet deftruction. But that I might not be taken wholly unpre- 
pared I fecured about my perfon the journal of my route, the 
only article of property which was in the leaft valuable. 

Having obtained the Greek's confent to cut away fome 
heavy lumber which hung from that quarter, and greatly con- 
tributed to augment the foice of the vefiel's ftriking the ground ; 
I began to throw into the fea empty calks, tubs, and balkets 
of fruit ; and was proceeding brilkly in the work, when I was 
driven from my poft by a ftrong party of the proprietors. 

On the 22d, before noon, the wind having abated a little, 
the crew were enabled, though with with difficulty, to hoift out 
the bout, which was out of all proportion, large and heavy ; 
nor did the veflel ever touch the ground after being diibur- 
thencd of this niafs. 

On the 23d, at anchor, the wind moderate but contrary. 
The veflel remained nearly in the lame place until the s9th« 
when many fiihing boats came in fight ; not lefs I imagine, 
than one hundred j and fome of them vi filing u% wc purchafed 
Vol II. K k at 


at the rate of a {hilling a piece excellent fturgeon, the roes of 
which, ftripped of the filaments and fprinkled with fait, with- 
out any other preparation, is the common food of the Ruffians, 
and of which I have eat heartily. This when dried, is called 
in Europe, the caviar, and produces a profitable traffick to the 
city of Aftracan. The fturgeon fifhery is chiefly conducted by 
Kalmuck Tartars, who find a ready falc for their fifh, at nu- 
merous factories, eftabliflied by the Ruffians, on the lower parts 
of the Volga, for the purpofe of falting fturgeon and preparing 
the caviar. 

Having undcrftood that the Kalmucks were a migrating 
people, confifting wholly of fhepherds and foldiers, who derived 
a fubfiftance from their broods of cattle, and marauding expe- 
ditions, I was furprized at feeing them occupied in a marine pro- 
feffion. But many thoufands of the Kalmuck race are fcattered 
about the northern coaft of the Cafpian, where in fmall narrow 
boats, worked by four or five perfons, they are engaged in the ftur- 
geon fifhery during the fummer months. They often continue 
many fucceffive days at fea, the water* of which they drink. And 
they eat in its raw ftate part of the produce of their labors. 

There is not perhaps on the face of the earth, a human creature 

* At the diftance of fifteen and twenty leagues from the north {bore of the Caf- 
pian, the water freshened by the large rivers flowing into it from that quarter, may 
be drunk without prejudice i it being only brackifb, when the wind blows ftrong from 
the fouthward, 


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who lives on coarfcr fare, or to a civilized people more difgufting 
than a Kalmuck Tartar j not even the favages of fouthern Africa. 
Putrid fifh raw, or the flefh of carrion, horfes, oxen, and ca- 
mels, is the ordinary food of Kalmucks j and they are more 
active and lefs fufceptible of the inclemency of weather, than 
any race of men I have ever feen. The features of a Kalmuck, 
though coarfer, bear a ftriking refemblance to thofe of a Chi- 
nefe ; the upper part of his nofe is fcarcely feen to project from 
the face, and its extremity is furnifhed with widely dilated 

Being anxious to leave the fhip whofe provifions were nearly 
confumed, and which from the crowd and filth of the paflen- 
gers, had become very offenfive, I hired in conjunction with the 
Greek gentleman, a Kalmuck boat to go to Aftracan. But be- 
fore I quit the fubject of the veffcl, I muft mention to you that we 
brought from Baku five Hindoos ; two of them were merchants 
of Moultan and three were mendicants, a father, his fon, and 
a Sunyanee.* The laft was a hale, fpririted young man, who 
impelled by an equal alertnefs in mind and body, blended alfo 
with a ftrong tincture of fanaticifm, was making, it may be 
termed, the tour of the world j for he did not feem to hold 
it a matter of much concern whither his courfe was directed, 
provided he was in motion 

• The name of a religious fe& of Hindoos, chiefly of the Braaiin tribe. 

K k 2 The 


The Hindoos at Baku had fupplied his little wants, and re- 
commended him to their agents in Ruflia, whence hs faid, he 
would like to proceed with me to England. The Moultance 
Hindoos were going to Aftracan on a commercial adventure 
merely, and would not have gone a mile out of the road to havo 
ferved God or man. When I accufed the Hindoos of polluting 
themfelves by drinking the calk-water, and preparing victuals 
in the (hip-kitchen, they obferved, that they had already become 
impure by eroding the forbidden river,* beyond which all dis- 
crimination of tribes ceafed. Though fpirituous liquors are pro- 
hibited to the Hindoos, it does not appear that the ufe of bang, 
an intoxicating weed which refembles the hemp in Europe, and 
is prepared either for fmoking or a draught, is confidered even by 
the mod rigid, a breach of the law, for they drink it without 
referve, and often to excefs. 

In the evening of the 28th of April, four of us embarked 
in one of the Kalmuck boats, rowed by four ftout men, who 
directing a courfe for the Aftracan channel, proceeded at the rate 
of five miles an hour, over very fmooth water ; we reached be- 
fore night a fmall inhabited ifland, about twenty five miles 
diftant from the veflel ; and as the Kalmucks were fatigued with 
hard work, it was agreed to go on fhore for a few hours to 
give them a refpite. I landed with joy on the territory of 

• The Attoc. — N. B. The yerfes of the Emperor to the Hindoo Rajah. 


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Ruflia ; and you who have row perufed the ftory of my long, 
laborious journey, will fee rcafon, without the aid of figurative 
enlargement, for the pleafure I felt. The inhabitants of the 
ifland, who were agents of the fturgeon fifliery, received us with 
cordiality, and when apprized of the Greek gentleman's rank in 
the fervice, treated him with much refpecr. In a wooden houfc, 
cleanly furnifhed in the European manner, which to me was a 
rare objecl, we were entertained with a difli of fturgeon in 
broth, good bread, and pure water. Excufe the fenfuality of my 
defcription; but I muft give way to an impulfe of joy at the 
remembrance of that delicious meal. It was perfonally ferved 
up by our hoft, who agreeably, to the ancient cuftom of Ruflia 
waited at table, and performed all the offices of affiduous hof- 

At the conclufion of the repaft, in which the Kalmucks had 
fubfequently fhared, we proceeded on our journey, and leaving 
John's Ifland * on the left, the lights of which were feen, en- 
tered the Aftracan branch of the Volga. About midnight the 
boatmen became fb much harraffed by the labor of the oar, at 
which they probably had been employed all the preceding day, 
that it was found neceflary to refrefti them with a little fleep, 
of which I was alfo in great need. Having only a fpace to fit 

• Called alfo Chattiree Bougarrec. It ftands at the mouth of the Aftracan channel, 
and is furnilhed with a Ught-houfc. 


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on with my legs bent under mc, the pofition had long been 
very painful, and no fooner did the boat touch ground, than 
leaping out, I fpread my cloak on the ground, and flept foundly 
three hours. At day light we commenced our journey, which 
led among numerous low iflands, covered with reeds, and about 
eight o'clock in the morning, arrived at a ftation called the 
Brand Wacht, about twelve miles within John's Ifland, where 
a marine guard is ported for the protection of the cuftom 
houfe, and enforcing the occafional obfervance of quarantine. 
It was fortunate that I had procured a written teflimony of 
my fituation from the captain of the frigate at Baku, without 
which I muft have awaited the orders of the Aftracan govern- 
ment. We difcharged the Kalmucks at the Brand Wacht, and 
hired an eight oared boat, the property of Turkoman Tartars,* 
who were clothed like Ruffian feamen, and very expert in the 
management of the oar. 

The Turkoman fubjecls of Ruffia, are an induftrious quiet 
people, and have become ufeful fubjedte to the ftate. Many of 
them ferve in the navy and army, where they are received without 
objection to their religious tenets, which are lefs intemperate, than 
thofe of any other of the weftern Mahometans. Few villages are 
feen on the borders of this branch of the Volga ; the land, nearly 

• The defcendants of thofe Tartars, who were in pofleffion of Aftracan, when it 
was fubducd in 1552, by the Czar, Ivan Bafiiivita, furnamcd the Tyrant. 


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level with the water, is thickly covered with reeds, affording a 
commodious fhelter to numerous flocks of wild geefe, which feem 
to have reforted thither from all quarters of the globe ; nor could 
they have chofen a fitter place * it is equally fecluded from the 
haunts of men and animals, defended by a ftrong cover, and abun- 
dantly fupplied with frefli water. 

When we arrived in fight of the great church of Aftracan, 
which with the other fpires and high buildings of that city, pre- 
fent a beautiful villa to a long reach of the Volga, my Greek friend 
arofe, and making the fign of the crofs on his body, offered up, 
with an unaffected decent devotion, a prayer of thankfgiving for 
his fafe return to his country ; and I truft that I (hall not incur 
your cenfure for having adopted his manner and example. Forms 
are the leaft important part of our duty, and the obfervance of 
this, I held a neceffary refpect for the religious worfhip of a man 
who had rendered me eflential offices of humanity. 

On our arrival at his houfe, which ftands on the bank of the 
river, I requcfted leave to retire to a feparate apartment until my 
perfon mould undergo a purification, which had now become ur- 
gently necelfary, and fome European apparel provided. This warm 
hearted Greek would not liften to the propofal, but feizing my 
arm, forcibly dragged me into the room, where his wife, a pretty 
young woman, and fome gentlemen of the place were affembled. 
He introduced me to the company, by the name of Signor Gcorgio, 
and in a few words, recounted to them the heads of my ftory. 


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Though I was clad in an ordinary Pcrfian drefs, had a rough 
beard, and a very weather-beaten face, not one of them feemcd to 
notice the uncouth appearance, but by kind and polite congratu- 
lations, took every occafion to difpel my evident embarraflment. 
I foon went to bed, where I mud have been overpowered by a 
ftrong lleep; for the Greek told me in the morning, that he had 
made repeated attempts to awaken me, fearing that his houle 
would have been confumed by a fire, which had broke out with 
violence in the neighbourhood. My hoft infilled on furnifning 
me with clothing out of his own wardrobe, obferving that my 
(hort flay at Aftracan, would not admit of a new equipment; 
an Armenian gentleman, who came to welcome the Greek's ar- 
rival, propofed to introduce me to the officer, commanding the 
Cafpian fquadron, and to one of my countrymen, a lieutenant 
in the Ruffian navy. 

The commodore,* who fpoke the Englifti language very in- 
telligibly, received us with much politenefs, and fent a fervant 
to inform Mr. Long, the Englifh gentleman, of my arrival. 
The connection which I formed with my countryman, who was 
of a friendly and chearful difpofition, rendered my ftay at Af- 
tracan, very pleafant; and having little other occupation there, 
than that of a fpeclator, you will neceflanly Gippofc, that I 
ought to give fome defcription of this quarter of Rutiia ; but 

• Tcter Hjnnicoffj alcnight of one of the military orders. 


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the fubject has already been fo amply inveftigated by writers of 
almoft every European nation, that had even my refidence enabled 
me to undertake the difcuflion, little remains to be defcribed. 

It is feen in the hiftory of Ruflia, that the Czar, Ivan Bafi- 
lovitz, having in the year 1552, conquered the Tartar kingdom 
of Cafan, he turned his arms againft the Nogay Tartars of Aftra- 
can, and fubdued their country, the capital of which he took by 
affault, and ftrengthened it by a new fortification in the Afiatic 
manner. The fpace which the territory of Aftracan occupies on 
the face of the globe is fo peculiarly marked, that it enforces the 
notice of every obferver. On the eaft and fouth-eaft, it is fkirted 
by a wild extenfive defert, reaching tp the habitable quarters of 
Tranfoxonian Tartary ; on the fouth, it hath the barren fliores of 
the Cafpian fea ; on the fouth-eaft, a defert of three or four hun- 
dred miles, extending to Circaflia, which is only fupplied at two 
places with frefh water ; and on the weft, another fpacious wafte 
divides it from the Black fea. 

On thefe dreary plains, little other veftige of humanity is 
feen than thinly fcattered hords of roving Tartars, whofe rude 
and favage life but incrcafcs the horror of the fcenej and, as 
if the kinder powers of nature had been deftroyed, or arrefted 
by fome malignant influence, not a ftirub or blade of grafs is 
to be feen on many of thefe plains that is not tainted with 
noxious qualities. To the north and north-eaft, the province 
of Aftracan is bounded by Ruflia Proper, and Cazan, on which 

Vol. II. L 1 fide 

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fide alfo a wide tracl: of barren land is interpofed. The ifland 
on which Aftracan (lands, as well as its dependant territory, 
produces no grain, and though fo deeply furrounded by deferts, 
no quarter of the Ruffian dominions is more abundantly fup- 
plied with this provifion. The country to the weftward and 
fouthward of Aftracan, produces a natural fait of an excellent 
quality for domeftic ufes, which is tranfpoited from thence to 
remote parts of the empire, chiefly by water carriage * The 
flourifhing ftate of the province of Aftracan, hath alfo been 
largely promoted by its fifheries on the Volga and the Cafpian 


fca, where the fifli arc procured and falted at a cheap rate, and 
the fale is very extenfive.. 

A brisk trarfick has long fubfifted between Aftracan and 
the Tartars of Bochara and Khieva, who in return for their 
curious furs and lambfkins, purchafe a variety of European com- 
modities. Yet the natural advantages of Aftracan would yield 
but a fmall portion of their benefits, did not the Volga furnifli the 
means of a fecure and commodious conveyance. This river, 
which has a courfe of not lefs than two thoufand Britifti miles, 
takes its rife from a lake of the fame name, in the province of No- 

• Saltpetre, though not in large quantities, is found in the vicinity of Aftracan, 
which, according to Cooke, is taken out of the earth, and macerated for fomc time in 
water } then they draw it off, and by adding foot and fome quick lime, evaporate the 
water, and make as good lalrpetre as can be made any where. See trails of Mr. 
William Cooke, Surgeon. 


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vogorod, latitude 57, longitude caft 51, and after ikirting nume- 
rous cities and mercantile towns, falls into the Cafpian fea, forty 
miles below Aftracan. In this courfe, it receives many rivers and 
leffer ftreams, which fpreading to the eaftward, form a navigable 
communication throughout that wide fpace of country, lying be- 
tween Siberia and the Dnieper. 

By the Occa which receives the river Mofca and joins the Vol- 
ga, at the city of Nijnio Novogorod, large boats pafs from Aftracan 
to the old capital ; and by a canal which unites the Volga with the 
Mfta, a river ultimately flowing into the Ladoga lake, the fource of 
the Neva, an inland navigation is completely opened between the 
Cafpian and the Baltic feas. From the level face of the country, 
the current * of the Volga has little force, and will admit of boats 
being warped againft it, at the rate of three miles an hour.f The 
city of Aftracan is fuppofed to contain about eighty thoufand in- 
habitants. Exclufive of the Ruffians, there is a numerous colony 
of Nagayan Tartars, (the ancient people of the country), many 
Greeks, Armenians, and Circaffians, fome itinerant Perfians, and a. 
fmall fociety of Hindoos. 

In the life of Timur Beg, tranflated from the Perfic by M. 
Petit de la Croix, Aftracan is denominated Hadji Terkan, one 
of the principal cities of the kingdom of Kapchac, which Ti- 


* It runs about one and a half, and two miles per hour. 

t For a defcription of the manner in which thefe boats are worked, fee Hanway** 
and Bruce's travels. 

L 1 2 mur, 


mur, when he penetrated into that quarter of Tartary, took and 
deftroyed. This prince detached alfo a part of his army fur- 
ther up the Volga to Serai,* the capital of Kapchac, which 
was plundered and reduced to aflies. In the hiftory of Timur, 
I find a paflage relative to Ruffia, which for the curious in- 
formation it conveys, deferves a difrincl notice. 

Timur, in the purfuit of a vanquifhed enemy, arrived at 
the river Dnieper, which leaving on the left, he crofied the 
Don, and entered the dominion of Ruffia. The author, in the 
Englifh tranflation, fays, 11 our foldicrs purfued him as far as 
Corafon, the prefent Korefh, a town of Grand Ruffia, which 
" they entirely pillaged. They over-run all the great kingdom of 
" Mufcovy and Ourous-dgic, or Little Ruffia, where they took 
" prodigious droves of cattle, and abundance of women, and girls 
" of all ages, and of an extraordinary beauty and fhape. Then 
" Timur went in perfon to the city of Mofcow, the capital of 
M Grand Ruffia, which his foldiers plundered, as they had done 

all the neighbouring places dependant on it, defeating and cut- 
" ting in pieces the governors and princes. The Ruffians and 
" Mufcovitcs never beheld their kingdom in fo bad a condition j 
" their plains being covered with dead bodies. The army en- 
« riched themfelves with whatever they could find in this vaft 

country, as ingots of gold, filver blades, great quantities of 

* An Afiatic word fignifying rcfidence. 

* antioch'; 

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" antiochj very much efteemed cloth, wove in Ruflia with a great 
" deal of (kill and nicety ; vaft numbers of fables, black as jet, 
" and ermins, with which every perfon in the army was fuf- 
" ficicntly furnifhed, both for his own and his childrens lives; 
" as likewife fldns of vacafli, grey and white, fpotted like tygers 
" fkins. They alfo brought away many fkins of grey and red 
" foxes, and an infinite number of young colts which had not 
" been (hod. It would be tedious to give a detail of all the 
" booty they obtained in this great country." 

What an immenfe fcope did the conquefts and invafions of 
Timur embrace. His arms were feen victorious on the Ganges, and 
his banners flying on the confines of the Baltic fea ! yet, view the 
fcene of the prefent day, and you will behold the great empirei 
which he founded, mouldered into duft. Ruflia which had felt the 
force of the deftruftive Tartar, and was but yefterday drawn 
out of barbarifm and reduced into form, hath already taken am- 
ple vengeance* for the dilgrace fhe then fuffered ; and in the 
probable revolution of events, promifes to complete the work 
which has been fo fuccefsfully begun. 

During the flouriftiing ftate of Perfia and Turkey, when 
thefe powers were enabled to reftrain the Ruffian empire within its 
proper limit, Aftxacan was confidered an important frontier. But 

• The imperial family of Turkey is of the Tartar race. 



fince the decay of the Perfian monarchy, the independance of 
Georgia, and the ceflion of the Crimea by the Turks, who in this 
furrender have proclaimed their weaknefs and pufillanimity to 
the world; and fince the Tartars who were fcattered over the 
eaftern and weftern fides of the Volga, have been either com- 
pelled to defert their haunts, or fubmit to the Ruffian power, 
this province no longer forms the boundary of the empire. The 
government of Aflrracan, is now directed by a fyftera wholly civil 
and commercial, and the garrifon con fills of about fifteen hundred 
men, who have more the appearance of militia than regular 
troops, and are confpicuoufly deficient in military order. 

In this city, which occupies a mediate fituation between Afia 
and Europe, there is perhaps a more diverfi|ed affcmblage of 
nations, than on any other fpot on the globe, and a more 
liberal difplay of toleration } you fee the Greek, Lutheran, 
and Roman churches, mingled with the Mahometan mofque 
and Hindoo pagoda, and the different fectariee united by the 
bonds of a common focial compact:. The largeft portion of 
the induftry and adventure which fupports the commerce of 
Aftracan, is contributed by the Armenians, who are the pro- 
prietors of moft of the Cafpian veflels, and the chief conductors 
of the Perfian trade. By their pliant manners but more by 
their wealth, which has fupplied the means of fecuring the favor 
of government, the Armenians have acquired a dulinguiflied in- 

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fluence and refpcct in this province. Where they exhibit a 
cumbrous luxury and fplendorj and generally adopt the Ruf- 
fian manners. It evidently appears that the extenfive encou. 
ragement given to thefe people, has conduced to introduce much 
wealth and commercial emulation into this part of the empire, 

The Hindoos alfo enjoy at Aftracan very fair indulgence; 
nor could they in the moft celebrated places of worlhip in India, 
perform their rites with more freedom. They are not ftationary 
refidents, nor do they keep any of their females in this city; 
but after accumulating a certain property they return to India, 
and are fucceeded by other adventurers. Being a mercantile feci 
of their nation, and occupied in a defultory fpecies of traffick^ 
they have neglected to preferve any record of their firft fettle- 
ment, and fubfequent progrefs in this quarter of Ruflia ; nor is 
the fact afcertained with any accuracy by the natives of Aftracan. 
In the karavanfera allotted to them, which is commodious and 
detached, they make their ablutions and offer up their prayers, 
without attracting even the curiofity of the Chriftians ; and they 
do not fail to gratefully contraft fo temperate a conduct with 
that of Perfia, where their religion, perfons, and property, are 
equally expofed to the attacks of bigotry and avarice. 

Manifest proofs were daily prefented to me of the benefit* 
conferred by the Volga on Aftracan, and the fouthern quarters 
of the province, which though productive of no grain, and but 



little pafturagc, are amply fupplied with provifions,* from the 
vicinity of Czaritfin, and even from Cafan, though at the dis- 
tance of one thoufand miles. A grand teftimony of the ufes of 
this river, which is formed on common notice, is feen in the im- 
mediate conftruclion of the city of Aftracan, which, though not 
a tree grows in the province, except in gardens, is chiefly com- 
pofed of wooden houfes ; numerous veflels are alfo built in the 
docks, and vaft quantity of fuel is confumed by the inhabitants. 
All this timber is floated down the Volga, or imported in boats 
from the upper countries. 

During my fliort ftay at Aftracan, I daily vifired the ma- 
rine yard, where I received much pleafure in viewing the pro- 
grefs which the Ruffians have made in all the degrees of naval 
architecture, fince the time of Peter. The fquadron now in 
force for the protection of the Cafpian trade, and awing fuch 
of the bordering ftates as may be hoftile to the defigns of Ruf- 
fia, confifts of five frigates f of twenty guns, one bomb-ketch 
and fome tenders. Out of this amount, two frigates with the 
bomb- ketch are at Aftracan, one at fea, and two on the paflage 
from Cafan. Thefe veflels on account of the (hallows at the 
mouth of the Volga, are conftrucled on a broad bottom, and 
draw only eight or nine feet water. An extenfive marine yard 

* Wheat bread, bore the price of one and a half farthing per pound, and beef of 
three farthings per pound, 
t Six pounders. 


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has been within this late years eftablifhed at Cafan, where the 
abundant produce of oak timber, and other ncceflary materials, 
with the advantage of the river, have pointed out the conveniency 
of building the hulls of the veflfels deftined for the Cafpian fervice. 
The Ruffians have introduced into their navy, many of the Dutch 
principles and regulations, which it is probable were adopted 
by Peter, fubfequently to his refidence in Holland, and by the 
naval officers which he invited from that Country. Some French 
ordinances relative to the rank and duty of officers, are alfo in- 
troduced, but it is not feen that their fyftem has received any 
improvement from the marine of England. 

The Ruffian feamen, in addition to their diet and clothes, re- 
ceive nine rubles* per annum, and as an inducement to prefer the na- 
val fervice, they are fupplied with a daily ration of flelh provifions ; 
an allowance not granted to the army, though it is alfo furniftied 
with dietf by the government. The Cafpian fquadron at this 
period, afts ultimately under the orders of General Potemkin, 
whofe army is ftationed between the Cafpian and the Black-fea. 
A part of this force has been lately detached into Georgia, the 
territory of Prince Heraclius,| a Chriftian chief, who in the laft 
war between the Ruffians and the Turks, withdrew his allegiance 
from the Porte. 

• A ruble amounts to about four fliillipgs and three pence. 

+ Confifting of rye-bread, and fait only. 

t He is denominated by the Afiatics, Hcracly Khan. 

Vol. II. Mm Since 


Since the acceffion of the Crimea to Ruffia, the emprefs 
hath held out an avowed protection to Heraclius, who is now- 
declared an independant prince ; and it appears that an officer 
of the court has been deputed to prefent him, in the imperial 
name, with a crown of gold, and the title of King of Grafia.* 
By this aft of policy, which involved no danger or charge, hath 
the afpiring monarch of Ruffia, fecured an ufeful ally, and efta- 
blifhed on the fide of Georgia a fubftantial barrier againft the 
natural enemies of her ftate. The other potentates of Europe, 
are in the ufage of prefenting their portraits, fome curious ani- 
mal, perhaps, or patents of nobility to their allies and favo- 
rites ; but a commanding fortune has enabled Catharine to be- 
llow on her friends,-f* crowns and kingdoms. It may be faid 
that Ruffia holds the fupremacy of Georgia, and it is probable 
that at the death of the prince, a period which his advanced 
age places at no remote diftance, the fucceffion with be arranged 
in the manner moft accordant with the policy of the court of 

An occurence befel me on the day previoufly to my depar- 
ture from Aftracan, which from a curious faft which it difclo- 
fed, may not be unworthy of your notice. Whilft I was look- 
ing at fome paffages of Hanway's travels in Mr. Long's apart- 

• An ancient name, I underfland, of Georgia, 
t Count Poniatou&y and Heraclius. 


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ment, a Ruffian gentleman came in, who perceiving that I was 
a foreigner, and from fome broken words which I fpoke, pro- 
bably an Englifliman, he addrefied me with fluency in my own 
language ; the book in my hand, which he obferved, belonged to 
him, had great merit, and that he was himfelf well acquainted 
with many of the events recorded in it. Without ceremony 
he entered into a general difcuflion of the hiftory of Perfia, from 
the period of Hanway's conclufion to the prefent time, and treated 
the fubjecT: with much apparent accuracy. 

This gentleman of the name of Marcke, had held the rank 
of Brigadier General, in the Ruffian fervice, and for fome years 
directed the affairs of the Ruffian factory at Ghilan. But, on a 
charge of opprcfling fome Armenian merchants, he was difmif- 
fed from the fervice, and mulcted in the whole amount of his 
property. Mr. Marcke concluded his obfervations on Perfia, by 
noticing, that the Captain Elton, who has been already men- 
tioned, married an Armenian woman in Ghilan, and his daugh- 
ter, the iflue of that marriage, was now refiding at Aftracan. 
Intelligence, he faid, had been received, that an elrate or legacy 
had been bequeathed to Elton, during his fuppofed refulence in 
Perfia, and that if fuch property had really devolved on him, 
no one poflefled a fairer claim to it than his daughter, who 
could afcertain the legitimacy of her birth, and who now a 
widow, encumbered with many children, was reduced to extreme 

M in 2 ir.di- 


indigence* It would be an a& of charity, he added, to make 
an enquiry on my arrival in England into the truth of this 
intelligence, and endeavour to obtain fome provifion for a dif- 
trefled family. Noticing in me a more than ordinary concern 
for the misfortunes of this woman and the fate of her father, 
he faid, that if I faw her, I fhould be enabled to reprefent her 
fituation with more corroborating facts. He objected to the pro- 
pofal of my going to her houie, apprehending from her manner 
of life, that the vilit would be incommodious j but went him- 
fclf and conducted her to Mr. Long's lodgings. She was a 
little woman about forty years of age, had from fome accident 
become lame, and was accompanied by a fon. 

Some years ago flie had been induced to undertake a jour- 
ney to Pcterfburgh, for the purpofe of eftabliftiing her claims, and 
had reached Mofcow ; where fome Armenians refiding in that 
city, diverted her intention, which they reprefented as fruitlefs 
without greater aids than (he poflefled. The honeft warmth with 
which Mr. Marckc efpoufed the caufe of this forlorn widow, 
attracted me forcibly to him ; and the pleafure which I fup- 
pofe he received at obferving the like difpofition in a ftranger, 
whom he was about to part with, probably for ever, incited him 

• General Marckc (ays that in a fliort time afttr the death of Nadir Shah, Elton 
was either aflafluutcd, by the hand, or the order of the father of the prefent chief of 


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to communicate many events of his life, which were related in 
a manner peculiarly animated and pathetic. 

It appeared that he was a native of the Ukraine, and had 
been early employed as fccretary to the Ruffian embafTy, at the 
court of London, where, and at Peterlburgh, he formed many 
connexions with our nation, to one of whom, I think he faid, 
his fitter had been married. He had ferved likewife in the corps 
of engineers, where I have fince underftood, he acquired the 
reputation of an officer of ability, and formed a friendmip with 
the prefent governor of Aftracan, who now renders him many 
offices of kindnefs. After occupying various ftations in the 
fervice of Ruffia, he was appointed to the direction of the Ghi- 
lan factory, whence he had been removed at the inftigation of 
the Armenians, who, he faid, perfecuted him with uncommon 
marks of malignity. His property was confifcated, and he re- 
ceived the fentence of baniftiment to Siberia, which was afterwards 
commuted to a clofe refidencc at Aftracan, His deportment 
evinced an unaffected refignation to the lot which had befallen 
him ; nor was it devoid of a manly exertion of fpirit. In a tone 
of fimple humility, but ftrengthened by an eye which imprefled ir- 
refiftible conviction, he affirmed, that in the condition which for- 
tune had placed him, he experienced a large portion of content. 
He had given a wide fcope, he faid, to the impulfe of ambition, 
and had gratified it by the aid of inftruments he now beheld with 
horror and difguft } but adverfity had at once extinguiflied every 



tumultuous affecYion, and endowed him with fortitude, and the 
fober enjoyment of reafon. 

Having made the necefiary preparation for my journey, and 
obtained a paflport, with an order for port horfes,* I was ready 
on the ioth of May, to leave Aftracan ; and here it is incumbent 
on me, to exprefs cordial thanks for the hofpitality and kindnefs 
(hewn me by the gentlemen of that city, efpecially to the honeft 
Greek, Ivan Andrcitch, whofe treatment of me, from the day he 
took me up at Baku, to my departure from Aftracan, was unde- 
viatingly generous and affecYionate. Nor muft I omit the good 
offices of Mr. Hannicoff, who expeditioufly procured the neceflary 
papers from the public office, and gave me letters of introduction 
to Count Zchernichoff, the marine miniftcr, and to Admiral 

Mr. Long's goodnefs to me was manifold; it anticipated 
all my wants, and indeed, by an anxious attention to my wel- 
fare, increafed them ; whether in furnifliing a (lore of provi- 
iions, as there are few houfes of fare on the road, or in forti- 
fying my travelling conveyance.f againft the cafualties of a long 
journey. The journey from Aftracan to Peterfburgh, having 


• This inflrumcnt is termed Pedrozchna, without which no perfbns can be fup- 
plied with port horfes, the hire of which is fixed by government, at the rate of two 
copeaks, about a penny, for each horfc, per verft. 

f A four wheeled carriage, called in the Ruffian language, a Kibitlta. It is fixed 
on the axles without fprings, and is fix feet long, and four feet in breadth, of the form 

of a 

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been quickly run over, and without a knowledge of the lan- 
guage, you will necefiarily fuppofe that my obfervations were 
limited and trivial. To qualify fome of the difficulties which 
lay in my way, Mr. Hannicoff furnimed me with a lift of the 
ftages and their diftances, which prevented the common impofi- 
tion of poft houfes, and afforded me amufement. 

On the 12th of May, at midnight, having travelled two hun- 
dred and fifty-eight miles, and two thirds, I arrived at Czaritfin, 
where I was detained until the next morning, that my pafTport 
might be examined by the commandant. This gentleman per- 
ceiving the embarraffment which arofe from my want of the 
Ruffian language, entered with much good-nature into the 
ftory of my little requifitions, and fpeedily accommodated them 
though at the time he was much opprefled by ficknefs. 

The country to Czaritfin is level and thinly inhabited ; yet 
its abundant herbage, (hewed the foil to be of a good quality. 
The garrifon of this fortrefs, which is independant of Aftracan, 
confifts of three or four thoufand men. Since the frontier of 
Ruffia has been extended on the fouth-weft, by the complete 
fubje&ion of the Cuban Tartars, and the acquifition of the Crimea, 
this ftation is not confidered of much military account. 

of a cradle ; about a third part of it, towards the head, is covered with a tilt of painted 
canvas, from the fore edge of which to the foot, a leather covering is occasionally 
fixed in a (loping direction, as a (belter againft the weather ; this machine is fupplied. 
with a bedding, and contain* alfo, the rcquifitc baggage of the paflengcr. 



From the wcftern bank of the Volga, and near the fort of 
Czaritfin, a chain of redoubts of about forty miles in length, 
ftrengthened by an intrenchment, extends to the river Don ; but 
which, from the like caufe that has dirainiftied the importance of 
Czaritfin, is now of little utility, and has been evacuated. It it 
faid, that the emprefs occafionaliy exprefies a difpofition to open a 
channel between the two rivers j a defign which had been under- 
taken by the great Peter, but fruftrated by the unfuccefsful iffue 
of the Turkifli war, as well as certain difficulties which attended 
the operation.* 

Thb ground occupying this fpace, which I examined, is 
chiefly compofed of gravel or rock, and apparently little higher 
than the level of the rivers. By opening this paflage, an inland 
navigation would be effected from the Black- fea to Siberia, by the 
medium of the river Kamah, which rifes in that province, and 
falls into the Volga, about forty miles below the city of Cazan ; 
and the Ruffian marine, now eftabliffied on the Black-fea,f which 
has long been a favourite objeft at Peterfburgh, would receive from 
this communication a fupply of commodities, the raoft euential to 
its fupport ; as timber, i rem, cordage and canvas. Such a paflage 
into the Euxine and Mediteranean feas, from a country yielding 

* The foil was found in many places to be mixed with a large portion of rock ; and 
the officer, an Englifliman, who conducted the plan, was cut off by banditti, 
t The port of Kcrfiw. 

a pro- 

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a produce fo various and valuable, may create a revolution equally 
important in the commercial and political world - t and enable 
Ruflia, now indebted to foreign nations for the maintenance of 
her trade, to found within herfelf a mart, whofe happy filia- 
tion is empowered to attract to a common centre the commerce 
of Afia and Europe. 

The Day on which I left Czaritfin, the road led along the 
fbuthern bank of the Don, which was wholly uninhabited ; its 
current feemed to run at the rate of one mile and a half an 
hour, and the breadth to be about three hundred .yards. No 
occurence of any moment befel me from Czaritfin to Choper- 
fkoy Kreport,* a diftance of two hundred and thirty-five miles 
and a quarter ; unlefs it be noted, that fo far from encounter- 
ing any impediment, I received a general civility and affiftance. 
When you advert to the predicament in which I flood, a ftranger, 
alone, and unacquainted with the fpeech of the country, you muft 
yield a due portion of praife to the excellency of the govern- 
ment, and the difpofition of the people. 

From Czaritfin extends a trad of uncultivated land, of more 
than one hundred miles, in the direction of the road, on which no 
other habitation appears than huts, for the accommodation of 
thofe who keep the poft horfes ; but it Ihews no other teftimony of 

Kreport in the Ruffian language, fignifies a fort. 
Vol. II. N n a defcrt 


a defcrt than the want of inhabitants ; for the foil bears an 
exuberant herbage, and is not deficient in water. 

At the diftance of a few miles from Choperfkoy, the dri- 
ver* of the carriage alarmed me by a report of the hinder axle 
being fhattercd ; an accident which gave me an opportunity of 
obferving the dexterity of a Ruffian carpenter in the ufe of the 
axe. Without the help of any other tool, except a narrow chif- 
fel, to cut a fpace in the centre of it for receiving an iron bar 
which fupports the axle, and to pierce holes for the linch pins, 
he reduced in two hours a piece of grofs timber to the requi- 
fite form, and his charge was one (hilling. 

Travelling one hundred and twenty miles from this place, 
I arrived at the city of TanbofF, not large, but populous, and 
generally well built, the rcfidence of a governor, who examined 
and put his fignature to my pafsport. The country was level, 
bearing little wood, and from Aftracan to this place I had not 
fecn a ftone on its furface. A heavy rain fell during the night 
of my departure from TanbofF, which caufed an overflowing of 
the adjacent brooks, in one of which the carriage funk fo deep, 
that the horfes with every effort could not drag it, though fte- 
nuoufly affiftcd by the driver. This trivial event fhould not 
have been intruded on you, did it not tend to delineate the cha- 
racter of a Ruffian peafant. 

* He fits on a low feat, fixed on the fore axle. 


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After trying various methods to extricate the carriage in 
vain, and without a murmur-, though the weather was piercingly 
cold, and he was dripping wet, he loofencd the horfes, and yoking 
them to the hinder part of the carriage, he brought it back- 
wards to dry ground. He endeavoured to pafs at another place, 
and was again foiled ; yet he preferved an evennefs of temper, 
which I did not think our nature poffefled. He did not ceafe 
a moment from applying fuch aids as were beft adapted to our 
relief; nor once (hrunk from a chilling wind and rain, which 
had thrown me into an ague ; but fevere patience, and an in- 
durancc of the rougheft inclemency of weather, are qualities with 
which the pcafant of Ruffia is conftitutionally endowed. Whilft 
we were ftruggling again ft this difficulty, which feemed to me re- 
mcdilefs, a paflenger leading fome horfes, faw the embarrafsmcnt, 
and chearfully yoking two of them to the carriage gave us fpecdy 

On the 20th of May, arrived at Mofcow, diftant from Tan- 
boff three hundred and eighty-four miles and one third. From 
the Volga to this city, I had not feen any land fo much ele- 
vated as to merit the name of a hill, and but few floncs on the 
ground. The buildings in Ruflia, with an exception of fome of 
the public ftruc"tures, and houfes of the principal people, are com- 
pofed of wood, which is lb abundant a commodity, that in many 
places it forms the ftrccts of towns and villages. 

In the interior parts of the country, a few of the churches 

N n 2 haw 


have lately been built of brick, in modern architecture, and (hew 
a juft tafte ; but the old ones are all of wood, heavy ill fhaped 
fabricks, and hung around with bells of all fizes, which the 
priefts, who feem peculiarly fond of their found, keep in per- 
petual chime. 

At every halting-place, I muft again notice, the people treated 
me with invariable civility ; inviting me into their houfes dur- 
ing the change of horfes, and fupplying, at a moderate rate, the 
things which I wanted. The roads in Ruflia, during the dry 
feafon, are in a good condition naturally - t for little labor is bc- 
flowed on them j which indeed from the large tracts of inter- 
vening wattes would be impracticable. On fome days when the 
horfes were ftrong, I have travelled from one hundred and twenty, 
to one hundred and thirty miles, over a country on which the 
eye could perceive no elevation. The intervening rivers I either 
parted on floating bridges or ferry boats, there being no fixed 
bridge on the road from Aftracan to this city. 

On approaching Mofcow, its numerous and lofty fpires* 
fhooting, though extenfive plantations, exhibit a view equally pio- 
turefque and magnificent. The gardens interfperfed through this 
city, have given it a more extenfive lite than is requifite to con- 
tain, perhaps, three times the number of its inhabitants, who are 
computed at three or four hundred thoufand. 

• 1 was informed that the ftccples in Mofcow, amount to fixteen hundred. 


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The driver of the carriage conducted me to a German ho- 
tel, whofe manager, a very alliduous and obliging perfon, fpoke 
the Englifti language fluently, and though he had experienced 
a variety of fortunes, fome of it very acfverfe, he had acquired 
but little knowledge of the world ; that is, he was ill qualified 
to combat its iniquitous practices, or to derive an adequate pro- 
fit from his profeflion. By a credulity and benevolence of dif- 
pofition, he had fallen a prey to many of the foreign adven- 
turers who infeft Mofcow, among whom I was mortified to fe« 
fome of my own countrymen numbered. 

This good, Ample publican, being within my knowledge an 
unique in his profeflion, and as rare objects are the grand pur- 
suit of modern journalifts, I could not pafs this character with- 
out introducing it to your notice; and I entreat, mould you 
ever vifrt Mofcow, that you will make fearch for this honeft 
German, and after thanking him for his kindnefs to the In- 
dian, fay, that he was very imprudent in depofiting a truft 
with a perfon whom he never faw before, nor could rcafonably 
expect to fee again. 

During the day of my halt, my hoft did not fail to pro- 
cure me a view of thofe curiofities, which moft attract running 
travellers at this city, but which having been already minutely 
defcribed, do not require further illuftration. Yet I muft make 
fome mention of a bell, the largelt probably in the world, and 
cxpreffive of the inordinate paflion of the Ruffian, nation for 



this fpccks of fonorous tnftrument. It is compofed of various 
metals, even of* gold, and filvcr j the height meafures twenty-one 
feet, four inches and a quarter, the diameter at the bafe, twen- 
ty-two feet, four inches and three quarters ; its weight, one hun- 
dred and ninety- eight tons, two hundred and twenty-eight pounds % 
and its cofl: is computed at fixty-five thoufand, fix hundred, and 
eighty-one pounds. A fire many years ago deftroyed the build- 
ing in which it was fufpended, and falling to the ground, where 
it has fince remained, a piece was broken from its fide. 

Moscow though no longer the capital of the empire, hath 
not felt thofe fymptoms of decay, which are feen to follow the 
deprivation of fovereign refidence. Aware of the attachment of 
the ancient nobility of Ruflia to this city, and alfo that her 
fpacious dominion required a fecond capital, Katherinc hath ftre- 
nuoufly endeavoured to preferve its former importance j and the 
institutions which have been eftablifhed, have centred, it is faid, 
a greater portion of wealth and commerce in Mofcow, than it 
pofiefTed before the removal of the court. 

The fuperior kinds of Ruffian manufactures are chiefly fa- 
bricated in this city from the rough materials, and are tranfported 
by water carriage or caravans into the raoft diftant quarters of 
the empire. An ordinance fb falutary will efTentially contribute 
to fix the profperity of Mofcow, which is alfo promoted by the 
refidence of many of thofe Ruffian nobles, who are not em- 
ployed in the immediate fervice of the ftate. They there in- 

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dulge that gaiety, diffipation, and pomp, in which they fo much 
delight, at a lefs expence than at the new capital. 

Mr. Zchernichoff, the governor-general of Mofcow, has 
acquired in the administration of his office, a general good name, 
by the eftablilhment of a vigorous police, and beftowing on the 
city many ornaments. Standing high in favor of the emprefs, 
whom his family had ftrongly aided in afcending the throne, 
his defires are confidered as equal to thofe of the court ; and it 
may be deemed equally conducive to the welfare of Mofcow, as that 
of the nation at large, that a fubject of fuch zeal and authority 
has been placed in fo eminent a ftation. The character of Mr. 
Zchernichoff deferves the more diftinguifhed notice, as a fhame- 
lefs laxity and corruption are feen to pervade every office and 
department of this wide empire, to counterpoife its powers and 
warp the direction of its natural policy. 

Mr. Hannicoff having given me a letter to his brother 
at Mofcow, I went to this gentleman's houfe, where, with much 
mortification, I faw every thing French. The furniture, the 
drefs of the family, its manners, and the preceptor of the chil- 
dren were all French. The Ruffian gentry, indeed, from what- 
ever other quarter they have drawn fcience and literature, have 
received a large portion of their manners from France; and 
it is evidently feen, that a connection cemented by fo ftrong a 
partiality, has occafionally attracted Ruffia, from its conlYitutional 
bias, and infufed a fpirit of policy inimical to its welfare. The 



prevalent ufe of the French language and manners in moft of 
the European courts, is not to be accounted the leaft efficient 
mftrument employed by France, in conducting that general fyftem 
of intrigue, which marks every meafure of her government how- 
ever trivial. 

I was received by the deputy-governor of Mofcow, to 
whom I applied for his fignature to my pafiport, in a manner 
Kttle different from that of an Afiatic chief to his dependent or 
inferior. He had juft rifen from his ficfta, and was fitting 
drefied in a loofe robe on a fofa of filk, in the front of which 
I was directed to ftand. lie alked me fome queftions on the 
fubjecl of my journey with more affability than I had expected 
from his appearance, and the glitter of fhew, which furrounded 
him. It is to be noticed that the Ruffians of all ranks are of 
a fallow and brown complexion •, few of them, even when young, 
having a natural bloom of face ; this defect I am induced to 
attribute partially to the exceflive warmth of their fbves, and 
a frequent ufe of the hot bath, which in Ruffia contains a more 
intenfe heat than I have experienced in any country. 

After dining with my German hoft, whofe attentions to me 
had been indefatigable, and his charge moderate, I left Mofcow 
on the 20th of Mayj on the next morning I arrived at the 
town of Klin, and breakfafted with an acquaintance of my Mof- 
cow friend. This perfon, a German, many of whom are fcat- 
tered over this part of the country, kept an inn, but he faid 


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with little fuccefs; as the Ruffian gentlemen, in their joumies, 
feldom frequent fuch houfes, and the other clafles of people are 
witheld by their poverty. 

The road from Mofcow to Petcrfburgh, meafuring four 
hundred and fixty-nine miles and a third, confifts generally of 
a morafs, and is conftru&ed, with fome interventions of folid 
ground, of fpars of fir, laid in a parallel direction, and ftrewed 
over with earth j this work was performed by Peter I. for cfta- 
blifliing a more eafy communication between the interior pro- 
vinces and his new capital. This extenfive wooden caufeway, 
founded on fo unfubftantial a bafis, muft at the firft fight ex- 
cite our furprize ; but it will in a great degree ceafe, when it 
is confidered that Ruffia abounds in timber, in robuft vaflals, 
and that the great Peter conducted the operation. My carriage, 
fixed immediately upon the axles, fhook me fo violently in its 
progrefs over this rough road, that I flept very little until the 
evening before I reached Peterlburgh, when being overpowered 
with fatigue, I lay down on a bed at a pofiShoufe, defiring 
the driver to call me at the expiration of two hours, but no one 
came near me till the morning. 

On the 25th of May, I entered Petcrfburgh, and procured a 
commodious lodging at an Englifli tavern. Mr. Shairpe, the Bri- 
tifti conful, being informed of my ftory, invited me to his^houfc ; 
and his introduction to many of the Englifh gentlemen, at Pcteri- 
burgh, enabled me to pafs very pleafantly, a three weeks refidence 
Vol. II. O o there ; 


there } he prefented mc alfo to our ambaflador,* whofe favourable 
mention of me in England, was cilcntially conducive to my 


In fo tranfient a vifitor, it would be a manifeft prefumption to 
give any detailed account of this fplendid city, or to defcribe its 
conftitution or laws. I will, however, notice fuch matter, as its 
more immediate projection forces on ordinary obfervation. The 
view of Peterfburgh, adorned with its numerous magnificent build- 
ings, interfered by fpacious and regular ftreets, imparts the con- 
fequent pleafcre of beholding a beautiful object ; but when I 
looked on the period, removed only at the diftance of feventy 
years, when this fpot, now covered by a proud city, reforted to 
by all the nations of the European world, and enriched by an ac- 
tive commerce, was a dreary raorafs, affording a mifcrable refidence 
to a hord of rude fiftiermen. I was infpired with reverence and 
wonder, when I reflected on the creative genius of the man who 
had accomplished lb glorious a work. Other monarchs have mo- 
delled armies, aggrandifed kingdoms by conqueft, or gradual civili- 
zation ; but Peter at once difpelled the cloud of barbarifm, which 
invelopcd his country, and brought k forth to the aftorrilhed and 
applauding view of Europe. 

It is on this ground you muft view Peterlburgh, to render 
due juftice to the memory of its founder, who in rearing his fa- 

• Mr. Fitxherbcrt* 

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brie, ftruggled with obftinate prejudice and enraged fuperftition ; 
but they fell before his commanding genius. Nor muft we forget 
that thirft of knowledge, which carried him into foreign countries 
to court their fcience, and praclife their arts. This fubjec"!: hath 
infenfibly produced a ft rain of writing, too ftrongly I fear impreg- 
nated with that fpecies of colouring, which marks the compofition 
of the Afiatics, and indeed their ordinary converfation, and which, 
by an intimate connection with them for many years, has perhaps 
become habitual to me. When you advert therefore to the foci- 
eties I have mixed in, and alfo to a warm impulfe, which has 
prompted me to throw a laurel at the brow of Peter, I hope that 
this effervefcence of ftyle will meet with an indulgent eye. 

From the dreffes of the nobility, enriched by a various dif- 
play of jewels, their equipage and pompous retinue, the court 
of Peterfburgh is faid to be the moft brilliant in Europe; and 
it fhould feem, that the emprefs manifeftly indulges * this dif- 
pofition in the courtiers, whether from the congenial propenfity 
of a female mind, or an opinion, that the intrigues and machina- 
tions which fhe has heretofore fuccefsfully practiced, will not 
deeply occupy the minds of a people, involved in luxury and 

The Ruffian gentry, efpecially thofe attached to the court, 

* She has cftablifhcd at PctcrlWgh, four companies of p.'iyers, of different na- 
tions, French, German, Italian and Ruffian, which receive fabrics from the public 

O o 2 are 


arc either in debt, or they expend the full amount of their re- 
vcnuc j and if the teftimony of thofe who have made the expe- 
riment is to be credited, we muft believe in the extreme ve- 
nality of the minifters of government, however adverfe to the 
public welfare. The administration of count Panin gave a 
ftrong proof of this difpofition. The French who have ever 
avowedly oppofed the views of this empire, have afforded with- 
out referve, affiftance to its enemies, and who, it is laid, rc- 
itricr. its Mediterranean fquadron, to eight mips of the line, 
poflefied during Panin's rainiftry, a leading fway in the Rufiiaa 
cabinet, which they rendered boftile to the general interefts of 
the empire. Since that period, Ruflia has adopted a more na- 
tural policy, and is aware of the falutary expediency of form- 
ing a cordial intercourfe with the court of London.' It is no- 
ticed that the Ruflian gentry learn foreign languages with ap- 
titude, that they readily aflume the manners of thofe whom 
they viiit, and lay them afide with equal facility j and that being 
a new people, they bear few marks of national originality j but 
like a mafs of ductile matter, receive the impreffion of objects 
in contact, with them. 

The peafantry are marked with ftrong chara&eriftic features. ; 
they are obedient, attached to their fuperiors, and pofiefs an obfti- 
nate courage; but they are addicted to petty thefts, and to an 
exceflivc ufe of intoxicating liquors. It muft furely be held a 
reproach on the policy and finance of a nation, when the largeft 


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branch of its revenue is feen to arife from an encouragement of 
the ruling vice of the people; yet this fa& is fully exemplified 
in Ruffia, where two capital im polls are laid on corn-brandy. 
It is fold by government to the dealers, at a fixed rate, from 
which a large profit is produced, and a duty is collected from 
every perfon, who vends it. 

Whatever cenfure the prefcnt Katherine may have incurred 
in fwerving from the cardinal virtue of her fex, we muft un- 
refervedly fay, that Ihe hath made fome atonement for that 
deviation, by eftabliftiing a wife and vigorous fyftem of govern- 
ment, by a liberal encouragement of the arts, and an exercile 
of humanity to her fubjects, meriting the example of the moft 
polifhed nations. She poffefles a munificence, which has much 
endeared her to the people, and which an occafion of difplaying 
happened fome days before my arrival at Peterlburgh. Being 
informed that an extenfive pile of wooden buildings, appro- 
priated to the ufe of merchants and tradefmen, was burning 
with violence, (he immediately proceeded to the fpot, where ex- 
horting the firemen to an active execution of their duty, fhe 
afTured thofe who had fuffered by the conflagration, that the 
buildings fhould be reconftru&ed at the public expencc and of 
more fubftantial materials. 

Among the many monuments of grandeur, raifed by Ka- 
therine, the moft attracting is an equeftrian ftatue, erected to 
the memory of the great Peter, which is placed in front of the 



council-houfe, and in a fituation commanding a view of the 
port; nor have 1 feed any figure which exhibits a bolder or 
more juft afpecl of nature, except that of our firft Charlea in 
London. It ftands on a hugh block of it-one, whole fummit 
Wanting, gives an alcending pofttion to the horfe, one of the 
hinder feet of which bruifes the head of a ferpent.* The figure 
of Peter looks towards the Neva, having the right arm ftretch- 
cd forth with an expanded hand, giving to all nations encourage, 
ment and prote&ion. Often did I vifit this ftatue of Peter, and 
in reviewing the ftupendous work, which his hand has railed, 
I have gazed on it with admiration and delight ; and did the 
tenets of my faith permit, Peter mould be chofen my tutelar 

Paul Petrowitz, entitled the Grand Duke of Ruffia, 
and the only ifliie of the cmprefs, having been little brought 
forward to the public notice, the eflential parts of his character 
remain undeveloped. The foreigners who have accefs to him, 
fay, that he is endowed with difcretion, is beloved in his family, 
and obferves a juft punctuality in the difcharge of his accounts, 
a quality the more deferving of praife, as it is rarely found 
among the nobility of Ruflia, who have become notorious by 
an accumulation of debts and a common failure of payments. 

• Emblematical of the malignant prejudices, which this prince encountered 
and overcome. 


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The grand duke is the nominal prefidcnt of the admiralty, 
though he does not officiate in that department, or pofllfs any 
influence in the cabinet ; but aware of the emprcfs's jealoufy 
of domeftic interference, he lives wholly abftraclcd from buli- 

A gentleman, who had acquired a converfant knowledge 
of the court of Peterfburgh, obierved to me that a female 
reign was moft favorable to the views of the Ruffian nobility * 
it afforded a wider fcope, to their ambition, avarice, and in- 
trigue, which under the eye of a prince, efpecially if he were 
active, would neceflarily be limited, and that they would ever 
diflike and ftrive to exclude a male fucceflion ; nor does this 
observation want proofs of fupport, in the four laft reigns of 
this empire. 

In clofing thefe defultory remarks, I am induced to notice, 
that thofe Ruffians who have not yet adopted the manners and 
drefs of Europe, and they probably include three fourths of the 
nation, refemble the Afiatics, and particularly Tartars, in many 
confpicuous inftances. They wear the long gown, the falh, and 
the cap ; and they confider the beard as. a type of perfonai 
honor. The hot bath as in Afia is in common ufe, even with 
the loweft claflbs of the Ruffians, who perform alfo many ordi- 
nary ablutions, not practifed by any northern people, and when 
not prevented by their occupations, they fleep at noon. In the 
manner of Afia, the Ruffians obfervc to their fuperiors an ex- 


treme fabmilTion, and their deportment is blended with a fua- 
vity of addrefs and language, which is not warranted by their 
appearance, or the opinions generally formed of them. 

By impofing a fuperior value on this quality, the Ruffians, 
it ftiould feem, have neglected to cultivate the more effential vir- 
tues, a want of which is often experienced by the foreign mer- 
chants, who have incurred heavy loffes by their want of faith. 
The copeck of Rufiia, a copper coin, in name, and apparently in 
value is the fame which was current in Tartary during the reign 
of Timur * and as the paflage illuftrating this fact is curious, 
I will lay it before you. 

" The dearth was fo great in the Tartar camp, that a 
•* pound of millet fold for feventy dinars copeghi, an ox's head 
" for an hundred, and a fheep's head for two hundred and fifty."* 
This occurrence happened during the expedition of Timur into 
Aftracan, at a period of two hundred years previous to the 
Ruffian acquifition of that kingdom. Should a national con- 
nection between Rufiia and Tartary be afcertained, a revcrfe of 
the general progrefs of conqueft, which has been feen to ftretch 
to the fouthward, will appear exemplified in the Ruflian na- 
tion, who penetrating into the higher parts of Europe, have 
fixed a capital in the fixtieth degree of latitude. Embarking at 

* Shirriff ud Dcin's Hillary of Timur, tranflated by Petit de la Croix. 


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Peterfburgh, in the middle of June, on board of a trading vefleL 
I arrived in England in the latter end of July. 

Having now brought you to the clofe of a long journey, 
the performance of which was chiefly derived from a vigorous 
health, and a certain portion of perfeverance, I bid you an af- 
fectionate farewel, and I truft, that you will never have caufe 
to impute to any of the various facts which have been brought 
forward in the body of the letters, the colour of paflion or the 
views of intereft. Amicus Plato, &c. The opinions deduced 
from them, given by a man flenderly converiant in the higher 
clafles of fciencc, and who has yet much to feek in the abftrufcr 
page of human life, I freely commit to your cenfure, as alfo the 
manner of writing, which I fear will be judged offenfive to the 
chaftenefs, diftinguiftiing the language of the prefent age. 


Vol II. 

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